Ladies and gentlemen it’s now closing in on the end of the year and I have been planning to try out a slight variation on the regular format of this series. I would really like feedback on this one. So if you can leave a comment bellow as to which format you prefer that’d be fantastic. I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and a happy new year, and that you all receive some cool shit. I’ll be spending Christmas Eve with my family which means having to attend two different events it’s going to be quite the task. Also if you want to know about all the shit I end up receiving let me know in the comments or on my wall. After this I’ll be doing my top 10 lists so stay tuned for more content from me soon.

Maybe that’s too many music remixes.

Xeodrifter (PSVita): 

A fun little Metroidvania game that doesn’t exactly do anything amazingly new but still has some cool ideas. I like the visuals, music and the general gameplay in this but it is very basic in comparison to classics of the genre. Worth checking out if it’s on sale but full price might be too much unless you really want more of the genre.

Bridge of Spies (Movie):

A rather enjoyable movie that was quite emotionally moving. Dealing with a Lawyer who has to defend an enemy spy but due to his dedication to his job ends up in some dangerous situations. I thought tom hanks and co. did a good job of this and there’s not much I had to complain about that has stuck in my memory. I recommend it.

Shovel Knight: Plague of Shadows (Wii U): 

Some of the best free dlc I’ve ever seen. Plague of Shadows expands on the world of Shovel Knight and turns side characters into endearing protagonists who have a rather good character arc. Gameplay wise it feels a bit cumbersome and slippery but I do think it’s still a fun time and makes shovel knight worth revisiting. Also the soundtrack is beautiful.

Broken Age (PSVita):

A fun point and click adventure game with an interesting art-style. The dialogue was enjoyable and the story went to some places I never expected. It has problems on the Vita though which made some sections run like shit in an obvious way. It’s worth checking out on sale but I can’t say it’s worth making a priority.

Also will weaton is in this unfortunately, but try and ignore that prick.

Assassin’s Creed Revelations (360):

This game has some neat ideas, but it’s ultimately the same as brotherhood but with a slightly more interesting story. Also the tower defence is ultimately pointless and doesn’t really add or subtract from how I played the games previously but I could see it being a pace-breaker for the more reckless players. Not quite worth the time but it’s still really solid.

Nagi no Asukara (Anime): 

An interesting romantic drama that has some cool twists but also lacks key development in certain areas making some of it feel hollow and unsatisfying. It’s very visually stunning but I can’t say I recommend this highly when there are better shows out there. You could do much worse though.

Crash or Splash (3DS):

Also known as Kersploosh this is a really basic game that provides a few minutes of fun but is pretty much as basic as most mobile phone games but with functional controls. An interesting distraction and nothing more.

Spectre (Movie): 

I actually quite liked this movie however it does feel like it’s lacking in execution. Personally I feel like more could have been done with certain characters which could have given everything more impact. I do like the overall “Big Brother” theme they gave the villain though and I wasn’t at all disappointed since the franchise has made some awful movies in the past (DIE ANOTHER DAY!!!). Worth watching.

Jitsu wa Watashi wa (Anime):

A decent comedy anime that didn’t overstay it’s welcome, I wouldn’t even mind a second season of this assuming they don’t just repeat everything to death. Also the music for this anime is hilariously stupid (as in the opening and ending themes).

Mockingjay Part 2 (Movie): 

A decent ending to these movies that went to some weird places but ultimately satisfied what expectations I had. I think it’s worth at least renting which is what I can say for most of these movies. Not much I want to complain about.

EarthBound Beginnings (Wii U VC):

An unexpected game of the year contender I never expected such an old game to have any significant emotional impact but the magnificent soundtrack and a rather simply told story that covers some dark stuff was enough to reach me and I feel this game excels in 8-bit where the basic visuals feel at home and in fact impressive for the time. I can easily say that I love this game and that it gets a solid recommendation from myself.

The Good Dinosaur (Movie): 

In terms of Pixar it doesn’t quite live up to the standard they’ve set themselves but this is still a good movie that feels sort of like a western but with dinosaurs. I would say it’s at least worth renting and perhaps even worth purchasing or seeing in cinemas.

Dead Space 2 (360):

A really fun action game that just gets really frustrating towards the end. I personally enjoyed the first game more and I miss the level design of the Ishimura which offers at least some exploring and a much richer atmosphere. That said it improves on mechanics and visuals and is a fucking blast to play. At this point I can recommend it but only after playing the first one (should be a no brain-er but hey you never know).

Working!!! (Anime): 

The third season of Working offers a fair bit of closure to this comedy romance series which is refreshing since so many shows go nowhere with these types of plots and characters. It’s still rather funny so I can certainly give it recommendation to those interested in the genre.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Movie):

I thought it was pretty good although some of it is sloppy and it feels like a retread of episode 4. I actually found Kylo Ren to be the most interesting character but that seems to be an unpopular opinion. If you wish discuss the movie please feel free to do so on my wall or in the comments. I recommend going to watch it but chances are you’ve already decided if you’ll watch it or not. I think it’s worth the time but certainly no masterpiece as I’ve seen some claim it to be.

Okay that’s it for the Chaos Blogg in 2015 please be sure to give feedback and now for some pictures to finish up this post.



Chaos Blogg 67: Boo B. Trap

Happy Halloween folks, well yes this may be a bit early but I think that’s better than the alternative of being late. This year I tried to plan ahead a bit but things didn’t go to schedule so there’s only one game that suits the Halloween theme here. However the others do have Halloween themed levels I guess so it’s not 100% ill-fitting. Speaking of ill-fitting things, here are some remixes that are quite energetic and cheerful.

Hitsugi no Chaika (Anime):

Chaika is a fairly typical fantasy styled anime more on the light hearted side. That being said it is quite action packed and delivers plenty of drama. The characters are interesting to a degree even if the protag is fairly generic (I do like the fact that he’s established to be a lazy mercenary type figure so on the generic scale he ain’t too bad). The namesake of the series Chaika is not only an adorable character but one that actually grows and develops throughout the series. In fact she’s the most fleshed out character in the show and the supporting cast doesn’t get quite enough nourishment because of this (with the exceptions of Akari and Fredrika). The story itself is filled with mystery and while the twists aren’t all that amazing they seem somewhat naturally paced until we reach the last story arc where the whole things feels rushed. Even 3 or 4 more episodes could have fixed this and allowed for more of a dramatic build-up. It could’ve also helped with fleshing out more of the characters since there was obvious potential that was never really used properly. In terms of visuals it’s good and manages to keep a consistent style even if it’s been done before. The same could be said for the ost which is rather forgettable outside of one exception which should be down bellow.

Overall it was a good time that could’ve used more episodes to improve characterisations of the entire cast, and there’s not much else for me to complain about. Very much above the average.

The Martian (Movie): 

The Martian is a sci-fi film about survival that you’ll probably hear being compared to Interstellar but I don’t think that is a fair comparison as both movies are very different even if they share some visual similarities. For starters The Martian is more grounded in reality even if it does stretch the suspension of disbelief with some of it’s more bullshit moments. However the movie makes these events feel possible which I think is a sign of good writing. The shit that the protagonist does to survive is pretty fucking cool either way and helps create a really likeable character that is both resourceful and witty. Matt Damon is fairly hit and miss, I mean the Bourne movies are like a tranquillizer to me for instance, but in this film he nails the role and pretty much carries the movie solo throughout. The supporting cast is also good and they provide a different angle on the whole thing. Visually the film is fairly impressive but not don’t expect anything too crazy in terms of spectacle. The soundtrack is mostly comprised of older songs that you’ll have to make your own mind about, in this way it’s kind of like guardians of the galaxy’s soundtrack (but not as good).

I think this film is worth your time, so see it if you get the chance or at the very least rent it out.

Sly 2: Band of Thieves (Vita):

GREASY SWEET! Sly 2 is a bit of mixed bag, it improves on the first game but at the same time the more open world direction means you’ll be seeing the same locales over and over again which can be an issue in some of the more tedious areas. Your move set does seem somewhat more diverse though and unlike sly 1 this feels like a stealth platformer with far more ways to actually deal with guards. Bentley and Murray add much needed variety to the gameplay even if they have far more mini-game like situations than needed (the hacking for instance). Since the game takes the open world route there are no more lives, and instead of levels you have missions which makes the game feel more like you’re pulling off a heist than going through level to level. I do like this feel more but I think the lack of linear stages does effect the level design negatively (which you’ll notice more if go for all the clue bottles and fine art).

I think the most fun I had with the game was some of Bentley’s sections involving the use of traps, and it’s really only a mechanic that is used twice throughout the game. However this type of multitasking and quick thinking suited the character while also providing some comedic edge. In fact I would say the writing for Bentley and Murray has improved dramatically and they quickly became a lot more endearing then previously. The villains are fairly hit and miss with Dimitri being the biggest hit which means they play their best cards early in that category. Same goes for soundtrack the best tune is fairly early in the game and while the rest of it is great it does pale in comparison. Visually the game seems improved from Sly 1 but since the Vita still did the cut-scenes all janky I can’t quite tell.

Sly 2 is worth your time just as just much as Sly 1 was, each game has a somewhat different direction and I think personal taste will decide which you enjoy more. The level design in 2 is somewhat of a step backwards but pretty much everything else is quite improved so it more than balances that out. Also be cautious as the A.I. placement can be fucking obnoxious at times and many enemies just kind of end up seeing you because reasons. Finally I’d like to add that the game did freeze on me once (if my memory is correct anyway) which could just be a problem with this port but it’s worth mentioning.

Akame ga kill (Anime):

This anime is rather disappointing and is a great example of how being dark and edgy can only get you so far unless you back it up with substance. Visually it’s decent and this shows in some of the action scenes. However the visual style feels inconsistent in terms of costumes and weapons, and the visuals do not help the tone of the show at all. Something about the colours for example just didn’t help with giving the story impact (not to say it’s all bad though). In terms of soundtrack it’s one I’ve already forgotten and while there may be one or two good tracks nothing stood out to me enough to be remembered.

The shows greatest strength is it’s characters or at least IT WOULD BE if they didn’t decide to keep killing them off because reasons. In fact most of the time I felt saddened by the loss of a potential for the character instead of actually feeling sad about the character themselves. While I do enjoy despair in my series I think overdoing it is just as much of problem as not doing it at all. For the audience to feel about the characters they need to be developed and while the ending does offer some of that, it overall ends up as an unsatisfying experience. For example the titular character Akame is one of the most boring and underdeveloped in the show. She’s sidelined throughout and this lack of screentime is not smart for someone you’re trying to establish as a main character. This series also rushes to its conclusion which is crazy since it already rushes itself to begin with. In fact this feels like a 50 episode story being condensed into 24 episodes and that is not a good thing. The pacing just outright sucks and adding in new characters when I don’t even properly know the old ones is fucking stupid. There’s almost no build-up as things just suddenly switch from light heartedness to violent gore in a matter of seconds and then switch back again. These two elements feel detached from each other as well, the humour isn’t the “laughing in the face of adversity kind” and the violence isn’t in anyway comedic, unless that stuff tickles your funny bone. It’s like if they spliced Kill Bill with Everybody Loves Raymond… okay not quite that horrendous but hopefully that gives you an idea of what this tonal difference is like.

Okay I am being rather harsh on the show, it certainly has some moving moments, awesome action scenes and a couple of really interesting characters and dynamics. For example the series antagonist is complex enough for me to both like and dislike her simultaneously. I think the reason I’m so harsh is just the potential this series had to be good and just how it never fully lives up to this potential. With that said you can still do worse than this and I do think it has an audience that will get a kick out of it.

Luigi’s Mansion 2 (3DS): 

I freaking love this game, and while at first I wasn’t keen on the controls and the gameplay changes I warmed up to them fairly quickly. The original Luigi’s Mansion was a very atmospheric puzzle/adventure game that had a lot of focus on individual ghosts that made each encounter somewhat different. While Luigi’s Mansion 2 has decided to focus less on pure atmosphere and instead chooses a more arcade feel with an emphasis on re-playability. The game is now split up into missions across multiple mansions and since you can keep replaying missions the secrets in each one feel less obnoxious (I mean I missed so much shit in the first game on my first run that subsequent playthroughs led to many facepalms). The variety in gameplay and locations is increased significantly as each mission will often change up the location, for example in one mission everything gets overrun with plants making certain locations more difficult to traverse through. While the elemental medallions are gone Luigi’s vacuum and flashlight are far more versatile here and the added mechanics help in providing more secrets and puzzles.

However this game does lose a sense of freedom in this process especially when you realise that your time effects your score and that some of the collectible gems aren’t obtainable on certain missions. That being said this game does fill my need to explore and collect very nicely and in that regard it may have out-done the original game. Also the new control method is somewhat lacking but that is the result of the original 3DS having no second analogue. In future a game in this series could perhaps fix this and give us the mechanics of this game with the controls of the original (perhaps bring back the medallions and make both an adventure and a mission mode like in Pikmin 3?). Overall this game has plenty of great puzzle ideas and the ghost battling is thoroughly improved.

Visually Luigi’s Mansion 2 takes on a more light-hearted visual style and it’s one that works well with a portable system. It’s not close to being as powerful as the originals visual style but it stands well on it’s own and brings this game more in line with the rest of the mario brand. The game is a beauty in 3D and only in really hectic moments did I personally notice it under-perform and/or glitch. I’d also like to mention that Next Level Games excels with this type of franchise as they clearly have the ability to make bring out the most of cartoony characters like those in Punch-Out! and the Mario Universe. Luigi is brilliantly acted and animated, and so are the Toads like wholly hell they have so much personality this time in their movements. E.Gadd has the best writing though and he gets to shine a lot more this time with plenty of dialogue. This game has so much charm and even if I’m not big on the new ‘by the numbers’ ghosts I still enjoy them for their animations.

This game has a multiplayer mode but I honestly haven’t given it a fair shot yet. Probably because I ain’t got no one to play with, but also partially due to it being a more randomly generated dungeon experience and that can get dull pretty damn quick. I may try to convince some friends into playing it though. Before I end my gushing let me mention the music which for the most part is just one theme repeated in different instruments but these variations just sound so damn good. Do yourself a favour and listen to this stuff, or if you have a 3DS consider getting this game if you don’t have it already. I can highly recommend this one.

Super Mario Maker (Wii U):

I have a love hate thing going on with this game. For starters it’s a lot of fun creating levels, and you end up seeing some cool stuff that’s satisfying to beat from other players. I’m still finding out new things about the game and I’ve ended up creating many levels. There’s also some cool Easter eggs and throwbacks to Mario Paint which include the nightmarish fly swatting game from my childhood. And the new content created for this game is pretty sweet, including a pretty amazing soundtrack.

However Mario Maker has problems. For starters there’s the 10 stage cap put on new players which I guess was meant to stop garbage piling up but instead has encouraged people to capitalise on trends such as “Don’t Move” and music stages that appeal to those players who like wasting time and money. Why yes I bought this expensive game just have it play itself. FUCK THAT SHIT! Secondly there are no checkpoints, which is a huge oversight and makes otherwise good levels frustrating. I know personally since a lot of my levels are long and I would like to give the player the option not to be replaying the same sections over and over. Both of these things can be fixed with a content update though and I hope nintendo are smart enough to do this while also adding additional content over time. Other than that the faults of this game come more from the community itself. Pathetically easy levels and stupidly hard levels make up the bulk of content, alongside the overused gimmicks and a tone of trash. I’ve ended up at the point where I will star any level that is somewhat competent and enjoyable just in hopes that decent creators can keep making better stuff.

Finally we have the problem of Internet celebrities who pretty much soak up most of the attention due to their semi-celebrity status and honestly they wouldn’t be an annoyance at all if the level cap wasn’t determined by stars and was therefore a popularity contest (even if unintended to be so). Anyway this ended up being a rant but yeah Mario Maker is still a lot of fun at its core but it also shows that Nintendo hasn’t quite figured out this online community stuff. There’s hope for improvement though and it’s in your best interest to wait for that improvement… I think. Of course I do somewhat want to recommend this so that people can check out my stages and I can therefore upload more stages but I don’t think that’s a good reason to recommend the title.

Aaaaaaand there we are folks. Happy Halloween! I hope you all have a great week and please leave your feedback in the comments. Perhaps give some level codes or just ask me questions and share opinions it’s all good. I’ll be leaving you with a treat so I hope you enjoy it.


Chaos Blogg 66: Zawa Zawa

Zawa – ざわ‥ A japanese onomatopoeia meaning uneasy atmosphere.

I figured the above explanation was necessary since most would have probably interpreted the title as weird nonsense. It took me longer than I planned to get around to this blogg but I think that’s natural since IGN is still a ghost town and my desire to pump out these posts at a swift pace has diminished over time. Even if it does take me longer I still plan to continue this series, and hopefully you’ll continue to enjoy it. This time we have 3 different games, 2 anime and 1 movie ‘reviewed’. Now on with the video game music remixes.

Kaiji (Anime):

You might remember that last year I watched an anime called Akagi. This anime had centred around a genius mah-jong player and was quite enthralling, but it unfortunately had a lacklustre ending. This makes sense though since the manga is still ongoing and there wasn’t really a good cut-off point. Kaiji is similar to Akagi, most notably in it’s art-style in which every character is wario and waluigi levels of ugly. And yes while the characters are ugly the style itself is interesting and not as terrifying as other anime out there. Like Akagi, Kaiji has a lot of high stakes gambling however it’s more varied in the types of “games” played and it ends up throwing a lot of curve balls thanks to this (Akagi on the other hand was almost ALL mah-jong). The pacing of both shows is the same with plenty of cliff-hangers and “edge of your seat” moments and I don’t think I could sit and just watch one episode. This is good because it makes a 50 episode series breeze by and it never felt like a slog. Also worth noting is that Kaijji has an ending that leaves room for further seasons but also feels like a somewhat natural end to the series with a decent amount of closure, at the very least it trumps Akagi in that regard.

Kaiji unlike Akagi is focused on Survival and it’s by no means a happy anime, that’s all I want to say on the subject though since any more is too much information that would verge on spoilers. In fact the whole “Zawa Zawa” thing is one of Kaiji’s key trademarks that helps amp up the tension and it works well with the soundtrack (which has some pretty neat tunes). There are almost no guarantees with Kaiji and I think that adds quite a bit to the anime making the audience feel more connected with the characters and situations. At the very least I recommend giving this show a shot, since I understand that the art direction can be off putting. Sorry if this isn’t too in depth but if you’d like to discuss the series you are welcome do so in the comments.

Counter Spy (Vita):

A 2D stealth with randomly generated rooms that offers a ton of replay ability, however upon reaching the end I didn’t feel compelled to play it again at all. Perhaps this is just my issue but something felt lacking from this game. Perhaps it was the same designs repeating over and over in very familiar ways? or maybe it was the lacklustre soundtrack? or perhaps it was the gameplay just becoming monotonous over time? I personally think it’s a combination of these things and that’s a real shame since there is so much potential here. For example I quite like the art style and it really suits the spy theme quite well and the core gameplay itself shows huge potential and is very competent. However the problem stems from slow pacing and not enough variety, sure you can unlock guns and perks but a lot of these go against the idea of being stealthy (like a fucking shotgun for example). Of course since I only saw the credits once there may be more on offer than I can see but frankly the game didn’t tell me that was the case and I don’t want to sink more hours into this just to try and find out.

This is another case where I’m just glad this was a PS+ game and not something that I went out of my way to purchase full price. Funnily enough if you can ever play it for free yourself I would actually recommend it since the first few hours are quite fun despite just how negative this overall ‘review’ is. Note: The story isn’t enthralling at all and the characters are bland.

Punch Line! (Anime):

You know for a show that sounds like Panty Line when spoken out loud by the characters I was expecting something that was shallow and crap. Something that might make for a nice negative ‘review’ however my expectations were way off. Punch Line! is a weird series that takes many clichés from anime and just kind of meshes them together in a story that somehow works. It’s got a nice sense of weirdness to it while not being incomprehensible and it takes several unexpected turns while also building up an interesting mystery. The soundtrack is amazing, the visual style is excellent for the most part and the fanservice has at least some plot significance and isn’t so in your face that it ruins any story and character building.

The pacing is nice and fast but never feels like it was rushed, in fact for just 12 episodes this anime has great characterisation and an interesting plot. It’s also quite comedic and delivers on intense action sequences. Personally I would consider this a must watch show, and I hope people do give it a fair chance since while this may seem like a shallow puddle it’s a lot deeper than you’d think and I think it’s worth diving into.

Ratchet and Clank (PS2): 

This game won 4th place in this years backlog tourney and I’m glad I’ve finally gotten around to it since I borrowed this title quite some time ago. It’s also great to finally experience the origins of this franchise, and really I think I’ve gained a greater appreciation of it’s sequels because of this. This game is quite clunky, for starters you can’t strafe from the start and when you finally unlock the ability to do so it’s not exactly intuitive. Next is the issue of most weapons being close ranged which makes dealing with ammo a pain especially since bolts aren’t as easily acquired and the ammo buying process is tedious. The health system is also somewhat poorly thought out as you can only take 4 hits until you obtain some optional upgrades later in the game. Even then I would say 8 hits isn’t much I’m glad that this system was replaced in later titles. All of these faults don’t drag the game down much though since it’s still a fun adventure and in some ways it has a nice simplicity to it compared to its sequels.

For an early PS2 title it’s aged quite well visually although the style wasn’t quite refined yet. The music though is pretty awesome and the type of soundtrack that gets the blood pumping and creates excitement while also sticking to the sci-fi theme. In fact it’s like a sci-fi take on a spyro soundtrack at points which makes sense due to insomniacs history with spyro. That said though it does feel like the same tune is being used throughout the game but with different instruments which worked well for Mario World but doesn’t quite cut it here. In terms of writing I think this game does a decent job of establishing characters and has some good comedic writing but it’s a bit too weak when it’s trying to be serious. There’s not much explanation about the main characters before or during the adventure and while I don’t mind Ratchet being an asshole I just don’t see the motivations for this other than petty revenge (he’s got like a moby dick thing going on halfway through the game). I’m very glad that the games after this didn’t try to be so serious with the characters and instead focused on the comedy and action side of things since that’s the obvious strengths in the dialogue here.

The game-play is quite a lot of fun though and this is an excellent foundation for some of the best PS2 games, I can easily recommend this unless you’re too used to newer titles and the problems mentioned above seem too detrimental to your experience.

Mission Impossible: Rouge Nation (Movie):

I decided to this on a whim and honestly I can’t say I feel strongly about it in any way. This movie felt very by the numbers and I’m not sure if I could tell the difference between it and the other movies in this series. The exceptions would be the Third movie which tried to be really serious and gritty, and ghost protocol which was really funny and took a more light-hearted approach. Meanwhile Rogue Nation seems cheesy but not quite funny enough to justify the ticket price, it’s not a bad movie either though and it’s at least worth renting once. This movie didn’t stand out to me in any way but it did provide a decent amount of forgettable entertainment and some days that’s kind of what you just need. Okay I can’t think of anything else to say… lets move on.

Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna) – (Wii U): 

A short indie game based on native Alaskan culture that is partially a documentary and a learning experience. It’s an interesting look into a culture I have next to no clue about and thankfully it’s optional. The game has an atmospheric soundtrack which is easily forgotten, however the visual style it’s beautiful… that is until you die and the character models go fucking insane and janky. Of course these moments provided unintentional comedic relief and I personally don’t feel they detracted from the experience. I don’t mind the increase of games that have passive education to them, for example Valiant Hearts is still an excellent game but has optional facts about the first world war. Never Alone has a similar approach but is perhaps less polished as a game and I think this is why it seems like a very divisive title. It’s a puzzle platformer and while it’s far from rubbish, it could’ve used the same level of polish as the presentation. The characters feel stiff and unresponsive at times and there are plenty moments of “Fuck you, I grabbed that rope”. My recommendation is to play this if you’re wanting an interesting experience and above average gameplay (like just above average for the most part, which is far from bad). Personally I was able to tolerate the lack of polish and found the game somewhat fun although that may just me being immersed in presentation and enjoying the genre. For others that kind of thing is a deal breaker so please think wisely before you buy. Also this could be a pretty cool gameplay concept for an ice climbers game, get onto it nintendo. 

Well it’s done folks another blogg down as we slowly approach october and I have some games for that planned so hopefully I can make the plan a reality. Also if you have any questions about the stuff in this blogg leave them in the comments bellow. Anyway thanks for reading, here’s some pictures.




Chaos Blogg 65: Woolly World

I was going to write this up yesterday but I ended up in poor health and wasn’t able to make myself type. Today is looking better though and in general that’s kind of how things are looking. Still really shit but better than before. In terms of games and anime though I’d say it’s been mostly positive few weeks and I can almost recommend all of the stuff on show here. So without further ado I’d like to get into it, bit first here’s the remixes.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Stardust Crusaders – Part 2 (Anime):

If you’ve been following long enough you would have seen to reviews for Jojo’s last year, and you’ll probably recognise that I enjoyed my time with this series quite extensively. Stardust crusaders may have not impressed me with it’s first half but this second half most certainly improves in overall quality and I’m quite impressed with it as a whole. I think this is because of the mixture of humour and drama present here, and probably a mental shift within myself. The art style is still fantastic and so is the sound direction, although I feel ending song was a downgrade and didn’t fit the tone until the last couple of arcs. The fights are still really intense and the characters are cheesy but well written. This is the kind of series that I do recommend people to watch for themselves (like go to part 1 and watch the first 4 to 5 episodes) before deciding if they want to check it out since I’m not sure if my words convey the strangeness and enjoyment well enough. I was enthralled and found it difficult to stop watching most of the time which isn’t something I say often about anime these days. If was throw any criticisms I would say some characters are straight up shafted and under developed which is a shame but nothing that creates a significant dent. The second last arc is brilliant and unfortunately the climatic final battle fails to create the same drama and impact. It’s amazing for sure but it didn’t live up to it’s entire potential and leaves it overshadowed by the previous encounter.

With that said though there’s nothing much that would stop me from recommending this one to you guys, but I wouldn’t mind seeing what some other people who have seen this think about these points.

Donkey Kong 64 (Wii U VC):

Most notable for it’s DK rap, collectibles and Lanky Kong this game was the one that tied with Max Payne when I did that backlog tourney thing. This means I would like to both thank you people and throw pies at you. DK 64 has far too many mini/bonus games that are required to 100% the bloody thing. In itself it doesn’t sound like much but when you go through a long tough section of gameplay to be awarded with a janky ass mini-game that controls like garbage and leaves you frustrated, it’s a big pain in the ass. Thanks to the power of the save state I was able to prevail and 100% the game but I can assure you this is no picnic and there were far more irritating moments than both Banjo games combined. On a more positive note I pretty much enjoyed everything else on offer here, even if I think it would benefit from refinement *cough*diddy’sjetpack*cough*. Core gameplay is standard collect-a-thon you run, jump and attack your away around levels trying to solves puzzles and collect shit. The levels are nice but compared to other Rare made games they feel barren and lacking at times, and there are less npc’s outside of the ones in specific buildings which doesn’t help things. The writing isn’t bad but it lacks polish and it’s really easy to just skip completely as it lacks to polish of other Rare titles.

As you can see that’s a common theme, it’s a good game but it’s lacking compared to Banjo’s efforts which is most obvious from the constant need to go back to character barrels in order to complete tasks. Honestly the game needed a way to allow for more fluid switching since while I don’t hate backtracking it does get irritating when I’m only doing it to use another character. Of course this would probably break the game to a degree so there’s not much value in complain about this at length. Speaking of breaking the game though I found a glitch or two and also had a moment where the game just repeatedly froze on me forcing to restart and continue from my save point (thank goodness I save a lot). It was startling, so just take time to save your game regularly since sometimes save states aren’t enough folks. Visually the game is good for N64 standards and the soundtrack is pretty sweet even if we take the DK rap out of the equation. Also “Oooh Banana” is a voice clip I should have trouble forgetting.

So this is probably sounding rather negative but I certainly didn’t feel that way most of the game. It’s a fun 3D platformer and I enjoyed the collecting aspect quite a lot. In many ways it was an incredibly satisfying game and I kind of regret never having the chance to play it back in the day. Outside of unnecessary bullshit this game was a blast and if we consider save states it’s not as frustrating as it would have been back in the day. In fact unless we get a remake some day this will probably be the best way to play the game on a Nintendo system. In short how much I recommend DK64 depends on more on your preferences and your tolerance levels, personally I felt it was worth it but I can understand why this game falls short of the Banjo standards. God I hope this made some sense.

Inou Battle wa Nichijou-kei no Naka de (Anime):

A mediocre anime that had a decent amount of potential and never really made use of it. Inou Battle centres around a protagonist with ‘8th grade’ syndrome which means he acts like a fictional character in an action anime (well slightly more complicated then that but I ain’t explaining any more than I have to). The protagonist and the rest of the literature club end up with actual powers which leads to comedic antics. The comedy isn’t bad and visually it looks good but somewhat standard, and similarly the music is good but forgettable. The idea is pretty good but other shows/games/movies have tackled this concept far better and this show just eventually devolves into a harem situation with no conclusion. There are some really good characters here and the show has some great comedic and dramatic scenes. In fact I’ve included the best clip from the show bellow and I don’t think you’ll need full context to enjoy just that one scene. There are also several well written and entertaining characters that get shafted in favour of characters that may have depth and potential but feel boring in their execution.

The show also has some sort of action plot in the second half but it’s forgettable and feels like a waste of time, in fact they have to dump a butt-load of exposition on the viewer to do this and it feels really forced. Perhaps this series is just the beginning since it does certainly feels like it’s trying to set something long term up, but between the forced harem aspects and the inconsequential action at the end there’s just a lot here that plunges it into mediocrity which is unfortunate since there’s some gold here.

Yoshi’s Woolly World (Wii U): 

Woolly World is one of the most charming games I’ve played this year, taking the experts at Good Feel who excel at an ‘arts and crafts’ visual style and then handing them to keys to the Yoshi series which is typically known for it’s various playful art styles and a sense of innocence. It’s a really neat combination and gives fresh air to some of the clichés in level design the series has. Woolly World has 6 worlds which range from grass, desert, dessert and clouds, tropical jungle, ice, and bowser. Thankfully there’s still plenty of variety within these worlds and I never really felt bored of a particular visual style or just in general. This game is a pure joy to look at and it’s a contender for the best looking game on the system. Adding further to the charm are the various patterns of Yoshi you unlock through out the game, they’re not all fantastic but there’s some really awesome ones here including several console based patterns. This feature also makes use of most of your amiibos except for the pokemon amiibos which don’t provide any patterns. Sonic the Hedgehog Yoshi is one of the best things I’ve seen and there are a few other great designs like Megaman, Luigi and Meta Knight.

To complement the excellent visuals Woolly World has one of the most relaxing but catchy soundtracks I’ve heard in a while, and I actually had trouble choosing which tracks to present to you here. It’s got variety with some rather unexpected funky tunes, along with plenty of stuff that sounds like it came from Kirby’s Epic Yarn or yoshi’s island. Epic Yarn had a problem with being way too easy for a lot people, while you can say that the game is a perfect place for beginners having an option for greater difficulty would have been greater. Woolly World pretty much does just that, with both a classic and casual mode. By Yoshi standards this game is certainly easy, but I don’t think it’s a complete cake walk unless you’re going for a very standard run where you just finish the game and reach the credits. At the very least you can actually die and have a health meter, and the game does have some really cool challenges at times especially with bonus stages you can unlock in each world. The real fun of this game is completing it, by finding all the neat little secrets and doing pretty much no damage runs of levels including the boss battles. For added difficulty there’s a final level that really puts you to the test as far as this game is concerned and there’s also a boss battle mode hat ups the difficulty of those encounters.

Of course in trying to 100% the game there’s some bullshit moments and you can end up replaying stages multiple times to grab the missing items.Some levels therefore can end up frustrating for collectable enthusiasts, and this is where the games Badge system can be a real lifesaver. There are multiple badges which you can purchase (one at a time) that give you a certain advantage which ranges from your friend Poochy (who has been improved since the old days thank god) to invulnerability to lava and fire damage. It’s certainly possible to break the game with these but I only recommend using them on clean up runs. In terms of controls Woolly World doesn’t have too many issues although I found the D-pad more reliable for this game and even then I’d sometimes fuck up my buttons. It’s pretty much exactly like Yoshi’s Island but with arguably a better flutter jump. Of course I maybe missing some obvious nuances such as the fact yoshi doesn’t enter a ‘running’ motion straight away but I’d much rather people discover these things for themselves.

I most certainly recommend this game to anyone with a Wii U console as it’ll be a great addition to your library. It’s filled with visual and audio joy, with some great classic styled gameplay that finds a nice balance between challenge and relaxation. Or at least it did so for me. Now please listen to the music provided here and enjoy.

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F (Anime Movie):

These new dbz movies are hitting all the right spots, well at least for me personally. I also managed to see this one in theatres which I think made the occasion more enjoyable, even if I did have to drive to a cinema I hadn’t really been to before. The movie balances action and comedy, however there’s little tension and if you’re looking for same type of drama the series presented to us back in the day then I think it may disappoint you. With a classic villain returning this movie is filled with references (more so than the previous movie) and I can’t easily recommend it to those who aren’t fans of series. However long time fans should hopefully enjoy the almost parody like humour of this movie, as many absurdities of the series are acknowledged in an amusing way. The movie is also visually impressive except for some 3D animation effects that broke my immersion. It’s also got a neat soundtrack that helps set the really cheesy tone of the movie. In fact I think Vegeta sums up the movie quite well with his line “It’s Cheeeeeeeese”, since this movie is very delicious cheese and funnily enough embracing this fact has lead to improved characterisation or at least wittier writing. There’s not much else I wish to say, this movie has a very specific target audience so with that in mind I give it my recommendation.

The Walking Dead Season 2 (Xbox 360): 

I think it’s really difficult to try and top the first season of this game, and I don’t think they’ve pulled it off here. However this is still a fantastic narrative based game and it’s fascinating continuing the story as Clementine who feels almost like a survival prodigy. The game doesn’t hold too many punches, although I could argue that it makes death just a tad too common and expected which is going to be a big problem if they ever make a 3rd season. You’ll also probably notice the atrocious load times during the “previously on” sections, they lag like hell as well and honestly I thought my console had frozen at some points. Outside of that though the game runs better from what I can tell and the art style still works for this series. The soundtrack is pretty much just one or two memorable themes and an ending song for each episode, which are all pretty high quality although there are many forgettable tracks that I can’t praise the whole ost. If we’re talking gameplay then a big thing to notice is that there are less ‘puzzles’ and sections where you ask characters questions. It feels less point and click and I guess they’ve done this to focus more on the narrative.

The main appeal of these games has to be the narrative, characters and the way our choices effect both of these aspects. For the most part I found a lot more of these choices harder to make especially towards the end, and I felt somewhat morally tested by the experience. The characters are still well written but at times it felt like the some characters were underdeveloped and perhaps a tad bland. Either way I grew to the story and I think expanding on Clementine’s character was the right way to go as she takes on more of a leader role, and has to deal with trying to save everyone (at least that’s what I saw). There’s also some really emotionally painful moments but they don’t exactly leave the same impact as season 1’s ending did. Alright I think that’s all I’ll say since I think I’m on the edge of major spoilers, and would rather you guys check out these games for yourselves.

Yay it’s done. So yeah these headaches don’t seem to be leaving me alone which sucks but ain’t much I can do about it. Please leave a comment bellow and enjoy some pictures.



Chaos Blogg 64: Max Memories Plastic Payne

I won’t into to details but I’ve been at least somewhat busy these past few weeks and I’m quite warn out since I’m not quite used to this amount of activity. In short it’s been a decent few weeks but there’s been a lot of stress and less games getting completed. In fact the majority of this blogg will be covering anime, however there’s also Ant Man and Max Payne so hopefully those will satisfy people not interested in anime for the time being.

I’d also like to briefly mention Iwata’s passing, as far as company presidents go he was a cheerful happy man, who bought joy to us while also making some rather large mistakes in his goal of making games fun for everyone. Obviously I didn’t know the man personally so all I can really confirm is that he certainly knew how to win over his audience. In my eyes some of the best things he did include the recent apology he gave this year for E3, and the early days of the 3DS where he cut his own salary and then gave early adopters 20 free games. Not often do we see company heads actually admit mistakes, apologise and then take one for the team (which should be the norm really). R.I.P

Now onto the blogg itself, and if you’re wondering about video reviews well I haven’t had any motivation for them in a long while. Also it’s remix time.

Hibike! Euphonium (Anime):

Hibike caught me by surprise this season and following it as it aired wasn’t a bad choice at all. At first I was drawn in by the animation, it was rather impressive high quality stuff so in that regard it was bound to deliver. I was apprehensive about the music side of things, since up until this point I had next to no experience with music themed anime and was worried that this would be an all style no substance affair. In short I was worried about it being a rather boring slice of life but with an orchestra. These worries were put mostly to ease as within a few episodes the show established drama and narrative, along with interesting characters that were also entertaining. The story follows a high school orchestra (or band?) as they try to earn a spot in the national competition, and they pretty much have to start from the ground up and find the determination to compete to begin with. There’s plenty of character drama as well and luckily it doesn’t feel forced and they balance it nicely with humour. In terms of criticism I would say some of the characterisation feels slightly inconsistent and at times the show does feel slow which may negatively affect those who marathon it. The ending is somewhat unsatisfying in that many questions and characters are unexplored, but I believe there’s a second season in the works which may tap into some of the darker elements that could possibly be hidden (at one stage the tone convinced me it would get somewhat dark). Also the soundtrack is pretty neat although it does take a back-seat to the actual performances by the orchestra/band. In short if you’re looking for something a little light but with some substance, or just want to see impressive visuals then I can easily recommend this to you.

Expelled from Paradise (Anime Movie):

An anime sci-fi film with some rather interesting concepts that doesn’t quite make full use of the potential these concepts have. The looks are quite divisive since it’s that weird 3D/2D style some shows like to adopt and while for the most part it didn’t bother me, there several points where it was jarring and immersion breaking. In particular the character “Dingo” just looks awful a lot of the time and his design doesn’t mash well with the this particular style, which is a shame since since otherwise he was a fairly good character. Also the protagonist has a lot of fan service and early on there’s some nudity so please keep that in mind if that’s not your thing. The battle sequences are rather impressive and probably the highlight of the movie and the best use of the 3D/2D visuals (thank goodness since that shit is easy to screw up). The narrative is just okay as it doesn’t really feel like it has a lot of drama to it especially since most of it is gone by the second half. The characters and themes are pretty neat however as the story explores what it means to be human, and the effect virtual realities could have on humanity without the whole “red pill, blue pill” stuff. The soundtrack was somewhat forgettable but it’s decent, and serves it’s purpose. There’s a repeated song that’s pretty kickass but youtube ain’t a fan of letting me listen to the versions I wanted to, it really saves this soundtrack though and ties it together nicely. It’s a short movie (by my standards anyway) so if you’re curious I don’t think it would hurt to check this one out at some point in time, but you could always do some research if you’re on the fence.

Plastic Memories (Anime): 

Plastic Memories is a somewhat misleading anime that changes focus about halfway through which caused some people to feel duped by the intriguing premise. For myself I kind of had a feeling it would take the turn it did but I’m also slightly disappointed they didn’t explore much of the concept as possible (probably due to length constraints). While it could’ve used more episodes Plastic Memories is pretty good show that had the same effect on me as the cutting of onions. While not the saddest anime, it certainly earns a spot just under Angel Beats which is somewhat extraordinary since they don’t really try to hide the sadness. Set in the future this series deals with special androids known as giftia. They’re often used to fill the holes in peoples lives and are designed to be as human as possible, however they have an expiry date which means they need to have their memories wiped (and by extension their personalities) before things go wrong. That’s as much as I want to reveal. It’s an intriguing premise and it’s a world I wouldn’t mind exploring in a different way in future. Visually I’d say this show is about average, although that may because of the recent high quality stuff I’ve been watching. In terms of music, I think it does a pretty good job of fitting the mood and that’s about all I remember at the moment. The show certainly has a comedic element going for it and I find most of the characters somewhat charming even if there are a lot of clichés here. While I wouldn’t say this series is a must watch if you’re looking for something short and bitter-sweet this might be what you need, and if you’ve already seen most of the other stuff I’ve recommended then you could do much worse than this series.

Ant-Man (Movie):

How is it that Marvel can always pull off shit that seems unlikely. Chances are if it sounds stupid on paper they can make something amazing. Hell back in the day even Iron Man seemed like a crazy idea but damn did it work. Then we had Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy and most recently the Dare Devil TV series. Ant-Man joins these titles in this category of scepticism that turned into something amazing. I absolutely enjoyed this film, it had fun with it’s rather silly premise and still managed to have a certain amount of depth to it. Hell they even made the powers seem bad-ass and quite intimidating which I wasn’t expecting at all. The visual spectacle of it all is nice, and the soundtrack wasn’t bad either. The acting and comedy certainly made it though and I had quite a blast watching it to the point where I can barely think of anything that I just straight up disliked. Perhaps it was a bit unexpectedly gory??? Either way I recommend this movie and hope you all enjoy it.

Dragon Ball Z: Battle of the Gods (Anime Movie):

Can’t say that I ever expected more DBZ to be made, but here we are with 2 new movies and a new series in the works. I finally found a dub copy on DVD which for any other anime isn’t a good thing but DBZ is my exception to that rule. I decided to watch the uncut version so keep that in mind as I continue. Battle of the Gods has some issues mainly that the dub feels awkward as many of the lines don’t translate very well. I also found the sound effects out of place at times, and the music often lacks the same punch as the stuff from my childhood which does effect the overall tone somewhat. Visually I was impressed for the most part, although there were some bits that felt awkward. So yes there are some impressive fights and they certainly ramp up the drama at times but overall I’d say Battle of the Gods felt more like a comedy of sorts. I never really thought I’d be laughing this much because of a Dragon Ball Z movie that wasn’t an abridged version on YouTube, it was a pleasant surprise for certain. If they plan to go in a more comedy route in the newer series I think I’ll be okay with that assuming they don’t remove the crazy action altogether. It was a good movie, and probably the best by DBZ standards since while I do enjoy other DBZ movies I can’t ever claim they’re good by any means. If you’ve yet to check it out and are open to a change of tone then I can recommend Battle of the Gods to you.

Max Payne (PC):

Max Payne is a somewhat simple game, straightforward and linear but with level design that isn’t just a straight line. If you take your time though you can absorb extra details and find useful items which you may very well need just to survive this game. Lucky for you Max Payne on PC has a quick save and quick load feature so even if you do miss helpful items you’re not always 100% screwed. Also as a side note thanks to those who voted for this game in the backlog tournament I held. It’s simple design but it flows well and while it can get repetitive it has plenty of variation to avoid becoming a slog.

Max Payne hasn’t aged well in the graphics department, not only do the character models look hilarious but everything has low quality textures. However the low quality lends itself to the more murky, gritty tone of the game. In fact it gives everything a dream/nightmare like quality which reflects the nature of the story and the mindset of the main character as well. The cut scenes are presented in a graphic novel format which works surprisingly well even if it’s blurry and messy, in contrast though the characters are more realistic looking (I believe they’re heavily edited photos of actors) which gives this strange vibe. The writing in these graphic novel cut scenes is fantastic and the narrator (Max Payne) has fantastic delivery which is reminiscent of nior film. These highly detailed lines that border on poetic at times provide a strong contrast the high amount of violent action that feels more in place in Die Hard, the Matrix and other action movies. The rest of the voice cast also do a good job with only a few annoying performances. To top it off the music fits very nicely with everything else and has a decent amount of variety.

The narrative is handled fairly well, and there is a certain amount ambiguity to the whole thing that I feel like there were many things left unanswered. Which fits with the games themes and just shows how much shit Max Payne doesn’t give. The gameplay is solid third person shooting with the only real twist being your ability to slow down time in order to dodge bullets and fuck shit up more effectively. It’s simple but it felt really nice to play and the game constantly ramped up the challenge. Sometimes you need to jump around and find shit but these sections are simple and there were only a couple of times I was stuck due to well hidden items/areas. One annoying part of the gameplay is the AI though, which often has stupid aim and can often end up swarming you. The worst example of AI has be the section where all you have is a baseball bat and you’re forced to sneak around, some AI spontaneously notice you if you go the “wrong” way and that whole section was a PAYNE in the ass. Also I would like to add that this game does not have controller support on PC which is bullshit but I somehow managed to beat this game with just my laptop and trac-pad, not sure if I should be proud of that or not. Overall it’s a rather simple action game with solid gameplay and aesthetic and it may very well be worth your time in future (Steams sales are a thing).

And that’s another Chaos Blogg done, I hope you enjoyed this one and please be sure to leave a comment as interaction is needed on this website. Lets not give in to the tumble weed. Now I leave you with these pictures.



Chaos Blogg 63: Unlimited Game Boy Works

– The Chaos Vault –

Metroid: Zero Mission (Wii U VC):

First up is Zero Mission, which is one of the few games that gets the extra Chaos Vault title.

When I first played Zero Mission I was impressed by how they improved upon the original game and it’s design. Second only to Super Metroid in terms of 2D games in the series, Zero Mission takes the layout of the NES game and gives it some of the best parts of Super and Fusion. For example you can now wall jump, cling to ledges, move faster and actually save your game. I also think the game benefits from being a remake as Nintendo have shown that they’re not too good at creating maps for the series any more as their original efforts (without retro) amount to a bunch of sectors in a space station. Having a template to work off is certainly a good thing although this certainly isn’t Super Metroid’s level of excellence as sequence breaking isn’t as viable, although there are well hidden short cuts for skilled players.

As with most well designed Metroidvania titles collecting items is amazingly satisfying and you should do just fine as the map is a great help in giving you general locations of items. The game also gives you vague directions towards your destination like Prime does without being overly restrictive, it feels more like a gentle nudge rather than an actual order. Of course I find item collection in this game slightly unbalanced in it’s difficulty, as many items require you to perform feats of great skill using the various speedbooster abilities. This gave some trouble early on as in the past 5 years I had forgotten about most of speedbooster mechanics in this game, and was much more used to Super Metroid use of the ability. Many regard this title as the hardest game in the series to 100% and while I don’t agree with that to any degree I certainly acknowledge that there’s some bullshit in the later game that may make you want to give up on that objective but I think the satisfaction at the end is worth it.

Now lets talk music, Zero Mission has an excellent soundtrack consisting of remixes of the original game giving it flairs of super and prime soundtracks in the process. It’s often quite blood pumping and ominous, and certainly feels like a great tone for this first mission. The art style is still rather dark and creepy but it had plenty of colour and often reminded me of a comic book which is certainly a more fitting look for a sci-fi series like Metroid than what they showed at this years E3. Of course it’s not my favourite visual look of the series as Super Metroid and Prime trump it (I mean the ship designs in Zero Mission are just awful, the space pirates are flying around in oddly coloured sperm cells), but the visuals are pleasing and helped establish the Zero suit design which has become both a blessing and a curse for the franchise. Speaking of the Zero Suit I think the stealth section was a little forced and while I do think it varied up gameplay, the map that they created for it was rather annoying to traverse afterwards and would have been better with some extra thought put into shortcuts. Of course it’s also a huge power high as you go around killing all the pirates that were giving you shit before hand. In short it’s a minor complaint and I think that can be said of most issues about the game. Zero Mission is a title that still holds up and one that I can easily recommend to pretty much anyone, however if you’re getting into 2D Metroid you should consider Super Metroid first and then make this your second choice.

Wario Land II (3DS VC):

Wario Land II was an unexpected surprise, a sequel to Super Mario Land 3: Wario Land this sequel takes a different approach to level progression. Up until this point the Land games had either been entirely linear or used a world map structure which is more traditional for platformers as a whole. Wario Land II though offers multiple branching paths that lead to multiple endings. Of course that would be more impressive in story based games but in this title it only really allows for some humour and more level themes/variety. Well it also means that the levels are designed with various secret exits which is great since each level is filled with secrets areas and encourages exploration. It’s somewhat slow but the exploration focus really drew me into this game and the emphasis on basic puzzles was also a positive.

One complaint I’ve seen for this game is that it’s too easy, well it’s easy in the sense that you can’t die but I personally find losing coins to be enough of a punishment especially if you’re going for 100% completion. A lot of enemies also give comedic abilities and hindrances which is an interesting dynamic which lends itself to many surprising moments. Sometimes it’s vital to use these new forms to pass a stage and to find secrets, and the rate at which each new mechanic is introduced is steady and avoids overwhelming the player. Aside from completing all the levels in the game to reach 100% you also need to find enough coins to open the treasure chest at the end and to play a minigame at an often secret location within the level itself. They’re simple and straight forward plus if you push the home button at the right moment you can cheat the system if you only have 50 coins on you (trust me that makes more sense once you play the minigame). Once you’ve done this you will find all the treasure and complete the map which will unlock the final level, which is one of the freakiest things I’ve ever seen on the game boy. It’s also a pain in the ass to beat but it didn’t feel like an unfair challenge, also you get to hear some kickass music. Speaking of the soundtrack most of the tunes are repetitive but this isn’t a bad soundtrack by any means, it just doesn’t hold up to the best the game boy has to offer.

Visually this game is somewhat basic but that’s somewhat expected of titles on the older systems. Since it was on Game Boy Colour it does a decent job using colours and there’s a decent variety of level themes on offer here which is nice. There’s an odd charm to this game and while it may be perhaps too forgiving for some it’s still a blast to play and has some excellent level design. It also has re-playability and you don’t have to trudge through every level just to get back to the next fork in the road since there’s a super helpful level select screen once you’ve completed one of the endings. I can most certainly recommend this one unless your the type who needs everything to be really fast. Of course I would suggest other games on the system first but I do think it’s worth playing.

Sonic Advance 3 (GBA): 

So this game managed to take second place in the backlog tournament, which is rather baffling all things considered however I was able to get through this quicker than I will be able to get through other titles that made the cut.

Sonic Advance 3 is the third game in the Advance trilogy on the game boy advance, it was around the time sonic was reaching his darkest years on home consoles and soon the portable scene would be sonic’s safe haven until Colours released. Of course this game isn’t exactly the shining beacon for the portable entries as it’s incredibly flawed. First off lets start with the control, it can be painful and takes adjustment on part of the player for it to become either passable or enjoyable depending on how much of a stickler you are for sonic physics. Another flaw is present within the level design as you’ll find yourself running into many instances of being crushed without warning. This was also before the days bottomless pits had those warning signs which proves troublesome if you want to search for the games collectibles. Really the crushing blocks would be less bullshit if this was made on a system with a bigger screen and we could therefore see more of what’s ahead in the level. Another problem is that the games awesome pair-up system is horribly imbalanced with many pairs being practically useless in comparison to others, in particular there’s not much advantage at all to using Knuckles with Sonic as a partner since it nerfs his gliding and climbing ability for some reason. Note: on every 3rd Act make sure to be using Sonic as the player character as it’s the only way to unlock the other characters.

Funnily enough my main problem with the game though is the stupid requirements to collect all the Chaos Emeralds. First off you need to find all the Chao in each zone, which is quite a bit of effort since this isn’t quite Sonic CD levels of design. You’ll find yourself replaying levels over and over looking for your cute little pals and once you unlock a key which spawns randomly in any act. That’s right all that effort for the KEY so once you stumble upon the key which can range from “too easy” to “it’s no use” you finally get a single CHANCE to take on the special stage. Yep that’s right it doesn’t permanently unlock the special stage so if you fuck it up you have to hunt for another fucking key. This is perhaps one of the most annoying Chaos Emerald hunts I’ve dealt with only topped by Advance 1 with it’s complete BS special stages that clearly don’t understand how to convey depth in 2D… wait those are in Advance 3 as well? well FUCK! Okay to be fair the special stages themselves don’t get bad until zone 6 and zone 7 but the fact that depth is still an issue is pretty bad. Combine these things together and you may find yourself going through levels again and again and again just unlock more tries at the special stage. This is the worst way to extend a games life and quite honestly it’s what lead to me giving up and just getting the normal or “bad” ending.

However if you can play this game on the Virtual Console or an emulator it’s fine since we have these things called save states which allow us to deal with bullshit such as this. Repeating the same 4 minutes over and over again? Nah fuck that man, just press restore or load and try it again until you finally get it right. Quite frankly I do not recommend getting this game on a cartridge outside of some sort of collectors value. Which is a shame since otherwise I’d say this is a pretty good game since there are many positives. The visuals are nice with many levels that don’t feel like they were ripped out of previous games… although sunset hill is a thing. Speed seems to be handled moderately well visually and there weren’t many glitches outside of the times I bumped the cartridge by accident. In terms of just gameplay it’s actually a good time especially if your just doing a casual run through of the game, the pair system has moments when it shines and it’s nice to see variety through that means. Advance 3 also has a pretty amazing soundtrack which is usually one of the guarantees of sonic games although that is arguable since music taste does vary. A good time on an emulator is to be had with this game otherwise it’s best to play something like Sonic Rush, Sonic Colours (DS) or Sonic Generations (3DS) if you’re looking for a portable Sonic game.

Jurassic World (Movie): 

When I first heard about this movie and saw a brief trailer it looked like they were going to drag another classic of the 90’s into the dust and turn it into a cheesy disaster movie with next to know character. However as time went by they changed the marketing direction somewhat and it was clear that heart was actually being put into this movie. I personally think it paid off as Jurassic was a fun movie that new how to keep the fell of the first film while also updating it for modern times. The previous 2 sequels used characters from the first movie to try and bring in back the audience and personally I find 2 to be absolutely awful, while 3 was at least mildly entertaining when it was released.

I really like the direction they took with the movie as it feels more like it’s own universe/timeline instead of just the crazy story of John Hammond making islands of dinosaurs. The events of the original movie actually had a butterfly a effect and I think that’s interesting to see. Also I think it helps that while the original characters are mentioned they don’t ever make a guest appearance (at least not a blatant one) this gives the new cast a time to shine and I think it pays off. The guy who played Pi (from the life of Pi) does a great job of playing the quirky out of touch park owner, and Chris Pratt shows us all that his previous role wasn’t a fluke. The comedic timing is a lot better here than the sequels but the movie certainly knows how to hit hard with the emotional moments, however there were times I felt it was going too far into horror/disaster movie cliche territory which I think it loses points for. Of course this film about a dinosaur theme park is cheesy but I think it manages the line between fun and dramatic fairly well. I also laughed my ass off at the ending which I don’t think I’ve done in a while.

Visually I think it’s impressive however I did see it in 3D which may have effected my immersion. Perhaps it enhanced the experience since I remember at least a couple of cool moments with the effect. I don’t want to comment on the whole CG vs. Puppets thing since people seem to be hung up about that. The soundtrack is pretty freaking sweet although post of it is forgettable outside of the main theme that makes it’s way into a shit ton of tracks. Overall I recommend this movie for it’s characters, it’s writing and the overall fun time it offers.

Love Live! (Anime): 

Love Live is a mediocre anime and one that is suitable for those who like the particular music it offers. After seeing many people carry on about the show I was curious about the fuss and while I don’t feel regret about having seen this I don’t think it’s much of a big deal at all. For starters while it’s certainly cute it’s not exactly excellent visually, and for a show surrounding idols and music a lot of the ost misses the mark in terms of memorability and some of the actual songs end up blending together by the end. Funnily enough though I think this series has decent character development and the first half certainly had a rather enjoyable story. The whole struggles they go through in order to form their group is a interesting journey and the challenges they face seem to downgrade once the second half hits and thus it loses some drama in the process. The second half felt like it lacked focus and drive, but at the same time it built more onto some of the characters and had some moving moments (although they felt a bit forced at times). It also ended on a semi-cliff-hanger for a movie that is coming out this year or so I’ve heard. Outside of the charming characters, some comedic value and some good songs there are not many reasons for me to recommend this series but I do think it’ll appeal to someone so if any of this sounds interesting to your tastes you may want to look into. Otherwise it is quite mediocre and you could spend the time better elsewhere.

Fate Stay/Night: Unlimited Blade Works (Anime):

Oh yeah, now this is some good shit right here. If you’ve been with me for the long haul you would remember a Chaos Blogg with several Fate/Stay Night related reviews. It’s been a couple of years since then and in that time I’ve grown more and more attached to the series, which means I’ve been extremely hyped for this anime since it’s announcement. Funnily the toughest thing for me right now is to decide whether to recommend this or Fate/Zero first, as this series does have many tweaks in order to flow with Zero’s narrative but Zero is meant to be the prequel which you’re not meant watch first in most situations. For the time being I’m leaning more towards recommending Zero first but I’m honestly not too sure. Also for the love of all that is good avoid the 2006 anime and the 2010 movie with the same title as this, they’ve become quite obsolete now and I don’t you all to sit through that.

The animation in this shows is fucking fantastic and it delivers a fuck ton of excellent action sequences, which is the kind of thing that felt incredibly absent from the previous adaptations and at the very least you’ll provided with a spectacle. As for soundtrack well, it’s better than Zero but doesn’t really pick up until the second season at which point I was clamouring to listen to the full tracks but they’re not even released yet. The first half does have some good themes but a large chunk of it feels like generic battle orchestra with out much sign of the original VN soundtrack. In the end though it excels in Audio and Visual departments, and thankfully it also does a great job of presenting the story. It’s not a one for one adaptation of the source material however most of the changes fit thematically with it’s prequel and in some cases we’re given more insight into some characters backstory. Of course I will note that some characters get shafted as time constraints seem to remove some depth from side characters. However when the previous adaptations went completely off track or were just a glorified highlights reel this anime did a fantastic fucking job of telling the story while tweaking it within reason.

Of course my view is of someone who has read the source material and I have extreme bias in that regard, I get the feeling many who entered with Zero and it’s much darker narrative won’t enjoy this show as much but I honestly hope people can enjoy both while acknowledging the difference and similarities. In fact most complaints I have with the story originate from the VN itself and that’s because the VN is designed to have each of the 3 timelines or routes build on top of each other giving the player/reader a greater understanding of this fictional world. Of course these complaints are minor and I’ve already gushed enough so to continue without going into spoiler territory isn’t feasible. Please check out this anime, and the prequel since I think they’re worth it plus there’s movies being made by the same animation studio that cover different timelines. *gets yanked off stage by a giant cane*

Ahem, now that I’m done here it’s off towards blogg 64 which shouldn’t take too long. Those four videos on the other hand is a different story and honestly I have no clue when I’ll finish them but hey motivation is weird thing that strikes at odd times. Anyway thank you so much for reading, and enjoy these pictures.





Chaos Blogg 62: Beans

As of typing this blogg I have come down with some sort of cold, so yeah that’s a rather annoying thing but luckily in terms of anime and games it’s been a fairly good time. And yeah this title doesn’t make much sense at the moment but just go with it. On with the remixes.

Mario and Luigi: Super Star Saga (Wii U VC):

My history with the Mario and Luigi games has left me with opinions that often go against the common consensus for fans of this series. I had tried Super Star Saga years ago but didn’t find much value in the early parts of the game. Fast Forward in time a bit and that’s when I played Partners in Time the second game in the series (the first one on the DS and to my shock the most disliked in the franchise) which was followed by Bowsers Inside Story. I enjoyed Partners in Time quite a bit, it was simple and a little short but pretty much every moment was fun for myself and I didn’t feel restricted. Bowsers Inside Story though is a game I didn’t quite enjoy much at all. Certainly the ideas were interesting but the core gameplay was split into many pieces and neither one was as polished as I would’ve liked (Although to its credit it had an impressive soundtrack and witty dialogue). Super Star Saga though is pretty much puts both of these sequels to shame. For starters it’s a more cohesive world which allows you to explore and discover, in fact you could probably compare it to 2D Zelda games in some aspects. The core gameplay is fun and is expanded upon (instead of being chopped into pieces), with gameplay variety being saved for various mini-games throughout the adventure. Visually it’s fairly good for GBA and the animations are excellent with presentation that reminded me a little of Super Mario RPG at time. The writing and characters are excellent, as is the standard for Mario’s RPG spin-off’s. The wacky writing also influences the gameplay and there’s some pretty cool moments that stuck out to me (Mainly involving Luigi). The music is also rather nice but this is one area where I think Bowsers Inside Story trumps this game, there’s also excellent sound design overall and the game feels like a tribute to the entire series from (the Arcade days to Mario Sunshine).

In terms of complaints well the early game is a little boring and that made it difficult for the game to peak my interest years ago. The locales are also a tad bland in comparison to other RPG’s Mario has been in. Of course there some exceptions and due the games level of polish it’s not much an issue, in fact it’s probably more to do with personal preference and exposure to video game clichés. I do have a bit of a problem with the collectibles since there are so many damn beans in hidden spots that aside from some special equipment (which is pretty sweet and involves Professor E.Gadd) and a bunch of stat boosting items feel rather worthless. In fact they’re more currency disguised collectible now that I think about it, since you can find an island at the end of the game that pretty much lets you grind a ton of beans of all types (there are 4 types of beans you can collect). So in that regard 100%-ing this game is pretty easy but it’s still fun and kind of useful to go searching around for secrets especially since they often lead to rare equipment that is rather useful. The battles have the same charm as you’d find in any Mario RPG, mixing turn based combat with a more responsive flare. Pressing the jump button when jumping on an enemies head will cause max damage and jumping can be used to dodge enemies and counter-attack them. Outside of Pokemon I’d say this is a great way of introducing players to the RPG genre and may even appeal to players who don’t typically enjoy RPGs to begin with. This game is a blast in gameplay and writing, it’s nothing award winning but it’s a fun comedic romp and one I do encourage others to play. Of course I don’t think my words do it justice and I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface.

Senran Kagura: Shinovi Versus (Vita):

Straight off the bat purchasing this game really depends on your stance on anime-styled fanservice, do you find it gross and want nothing to do with it? Then stay away from it with a ten-foot pole and you’ll thank me later. Do absolutely love the stuff and embrace your desires? Well then this might be right up your alley. My personally stance is somewhere in the middle and really does depend on context. As you may know I find anime that overdo fanservice and sacrifice plot, story, characterisation, and comedy in the process to be quite rubbish. For example the fanservice in Grisaia no Kajitsu (an anime from last year) was poorly placed, unnecessary and killed what little credibility it had. Funnily enough though the source material had plenty of fanservice moments they could have used if they wanted to but they didn’t (no clue why). With Senran Kagura there’s a lot of stuff here that is to my personal taste (hopefully that doesn’t shock any of you), but there are also many things that just didn’t sit well with me at all, and I have a really difficult time recommending it because of that (I don’t really want to elaborate on this, if you’re all interested in the game I suggest doing some research prior instead of jumping in).

Visually it’s not overly impressive and I could easily see this game working on inferior hardware, the artstyle itself isn’t bad. It’s not close to the best but it does carve out some identity for itself and if we compare it to pretty much all DOA games it dose a better job of not falling into that gross uncanny valley territory that I can’t stand. Some of the character designs are nice while others are just kind of “What the fuck were you thinking” and that becomes a pain whenever the game forces you to play with certain characters. Of course you can customise all clothing, so you can change most elements of design yourself. However this feature also hosts the games most fanservicey mechanics that are most likely going to make you uncomfortable to some degree.

One thing that didn’t make me uncomfortable is the games rather excellent soundtrack, which I honestly wasn’t expecting. Some of these tunes are memorable but even the ones that aren’t too memorable are suited to the characters and gameplay. In fact the soundtrack was probably the most consistently awesome thing in the game and if you’re not interested in the game I could still recommend listening to the music bellow so you can see if it’s to your taste or not. Voice acting is solid as far as I can tell, it was in Japanese and I don’t think I can quite determine quality because of that reason. The story is quite odd as these seemingly cliché characters are actually given some backstory and layers of personality and character. I feel it contradicts a lot of the shallow elements that are a part of the core of this game, and the overall plots (there’s 4 different plots just like sonic heroes) are just poorly written so the depth added to characters doesn’t have much to back it up most of the time (I would say there are some good moments but the bar was set fairly low). Any long term engagement depends on the dialogue and humour, and the gameplay itself. I was honestly surprised that I even found some funny moments here since a lot of the jokes were one note, and over-used by the end of the game. However characters like Murasaki and Hikage were able to bring me laughter quite a bit and they helped make the experience above average (fyi the character Yomi is obsessed with bean sprouts which helped with the weird title of this blogg).

The gameplay is an odd mix of fighter and hack n slash. You’re in closed arenas fighting either an enemy Shinobi (one of the other characters) or a horde of random goon shinobi. It’s not a very complex affair and after I finished the first of four stories it began to grow more and more stale until the harder AI started showing up. Like any hack in slash it’s fun in small doses and it can be quite cathartic at times, in fact it took me so long to finish since it was only fun in such small doses. Honestly the only people I see enjoying this type of gameplay for long periods of time are people who like ANY hack and slash game they find, but even then the one on one battles don’t feel like they fit nicely into this genre and they remind me more of that one DBZ game I played on the wii but with less characters and less to do since you only have a few special moves and “combos”. Which leads me to my final point, just don’t bother and if you’re still curious wait for permanent price drops and stuff like that. I have most certainly played worse games in my life time, but I’ve also played far better. I don’t want to completely shit on this game though, as there’s certainly potential for improvement and it was overall above average. Anyway NEXT!!!

Junketsu no Maria (Anime):

This anime which roughly translates to Maria the Virgin Witch kind of flew under the radar last season however it has some connection to Code Geass (I think a writer maybe?) and takes place in middle ages France sometime after Joan of Arc. Of course this takes place in world of magic, angels, witches and demons so don’t be expecting a large level of realism here. It’s blatantly sexual at times but rarely did it feel like fanservice, and as the series goes on some really dark themes and events are introduced. Not Kara no Kyoukai levels of dark but quite dark none the less, and it’s quite a contrast to the first few episodes. The ost is fairly nice and adds to emotional impact but I can’t quite remember any specific track at the moment. Visually well it’s slightly lower quality than a lot of stuff I’ve watched recently but it’s not a big drawback and the artstyle is fairly nice. There’s a lot of great characters as far as I’m concerned and a lot of interesting themes that suit the setting. There’s also some cool action sequences but I’d say they’re not the focus of the anime. I honestly don’t have much to complain about or discuss without delving into major spoilers. The conclusion felt rushed and many interesting side characters felt like they didn’t go anywhere, like they were just kind of wasted. Aside from those points it’s a decent and rather short anime that you may want to consider checking out at some point.

The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D (3DS):

This was a game I kind of wanted to put into the long forgotten Chaos Vault category but considering the game has been changed quite a bit I feel it doesn’t quite fit into that category. I don’t think I made it a secret around here that Majora’s Mask was one of my favourite Zelda games and I think this version has cemented my love for this game. While I may not have felt the same level of emotions towards the games story and characters (because I already knew what to expect) it still made sure I felt it’s darker tone. The music is pretty much the same, and by that I mean it’s fan-FUCKING-tastic, although I think it would’ve been interesting to see it all remixed in the style of the ending credits which are beautiful. Visually the game is upgraded and I’d say it’s better than OOT 3D, though that’s more because Majora’s Mask was a later N64 title and had more polish to begin with. I haven’t felt this relaxed in a while, exploring familiar territory with various changes and realising just how much of the game I remembered since I last played it 5 years ago. Of course I ended up forgetting some things and the stone masks location change really confused me, so it wasn’t all perfect. Funnily enough they really did improve the Great Bay temple which I didn’t expect at all, and really only Snowhead temple gave me trouble in this run. Boss fights were also changed to some degree, with Gyorg acting far more like a certain Metroid Prime 2 boss than he did previously. The two giant worms have changed significantly so I recommend paying close attention to your fairy this time around since failure to do so may result in you running out of time.

The game has been streamlined to be far less cryptic and more helpful but it never felt like it was hand holding since the original was often considered a challenge compared to the rest of the series. If there’s a harder mode I have no idea, but perhaps they should consider a more hardcore mode for people who want to punish themselves. These changes made the game far more addictive and combined with my own knowledge it was really fun and quite quick to 100%. No longer did I have to wait an entire cycle if I fucked up the Anju and Kefei sidequest because of a single fuck-up, and I appreciate that quite a bit. They’ve also added a new 7th bottle which makes a certain useless mask now useful for something. At present time the only thing that I can think of that I didn’t enjoy was the fishing stuff and that’s because I knew it was pointless, and honestly I didn’t even try it due to my phobia of fish. There’s some glitches here and there but this is a damn fun game that has been quite improved by this upgrade. I highly recommend it for both newcomers and veterans, and I hope you all have a great time. Also this game has Magic Beans so it gets a 10/10 AND WE’RE DONE HERE.

Death Parade (Anime):

Most of the anime I’ve watched this year so far has ranged from slightly bellow average to good, however not much has gone past that point so far. Death Parade may be the best anime I’ve talked about for months, and it is one that I can easily recommend off the bat. In fact I’m so very hesitant to talk about any details for fear of spoiling it for you all (under the assumption you have not seen it yet of course). This anime looks really good in my eyes and the way things are animated reminded me of Death Note to some degree, of course I might be completely wrong in that comparison but that’s what it reminded me of. The soundtrack is pretty good, but pales compared to the opening theme for the show which is excellent and really gets the blood pumping. The story is done really well and for such a short series it does a great job of targeting the emotions. Pretty much all the characters are well written and I found myself quite caught up in the questions presented by the series. I do encourage you to check it out since I’d rather not sit here gushing vaguely about the series and I would prefer to talk about certain aspects of this series in the comments bellow instead.

The Unfinished Swan (Vita):

As of this moment I think this game is still available for free on PS+ and for that I’d say it’s worth downloading and playing. The Unfinished Swan is a first person puzzle game that starts off with a really interesting idea. Your world is an empty void of white, and in order for you to make progress you must throw black paint all over the place in order to make sense of your surroundings. It’s a really fun idea and the game is quite beautiful for this, but the problem is that obviously saw that the idea would lose strength over time and the game shifts over to other ideas that aren’t quite as fun or interesting. For example you can’t do much of anything for a big chunk of the second chapter until you the power to make vines grow which is kind of interesting in that it allows you to climb around and explore a bit. The mechanics of the third chapter are pretty much fairly standard light based “puzzles” that don’t involve your projectiles. That is until you reach a couple of sections that allow you to create blocks and similar objects that allow to traverse. It’s not a terrible mechanic but it is a bit tedious and looks like something from the game Metrico instead of belonging to this particular game. These aren’t terrible ideas but as the game progresses it feels like it loses it’s core concepts more and more over time. Perhaps this is to reflect the narrative about a King that is narrated to you throughout the game? I’d like to think the game should have tried more with the 3rd part at least to incorporate the painting idea more.

Anyway enough on the negative since this game is still quite fun to play, and looks good throughout even if it sets its own bar too high. The story is interesting and a little moving although it’s quite heavy on symbolism, and if that’s your thing then this might be to your tastes (I liked it but didn’t find too moving). Outside of the main gameplay you can search around for balloons which for me was probably the most satisfying part of the game. Thankfully if you miss any the game gives you a Balloon radar so you can go back and get the ones that got away. In fact the balloons unlock all sorts of neat things like abilities, concept art, a sniper rifle and a Prototype level which is interesting but certainly lacking in beauty (mainly because there’s no music). Speaking of music this game has a pleasant soundtrack and I hope you give it a listen bellow, I don’t know if I’ll remember any particular piece but it’s certainly a crucial part of the experience. Overall this game is worth playing for the experience, but I don’t recommend paying full price for this and I encourage you to make good use of you PS+ subscriptions.

And that is the end of that chapter, it’s bean maybe a week (or it at least feels like it) since I actually started typing this but I pretty much spent the last week with a cold that made thinking about this stuff difficult and annoying so I instead just watched some DVDs and decided to start up the backlog tournament which is still ongoing. Anyway thank you so much for reading, I’ll leave you with some pictures.


Note: I always find it funny that I end up talking more about stuff that is flawed then I do about stuff that I actually really enjoy.