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One of the benefits of being press is that I get games. One of the problems of being press - at a site where there's two hops to get to me (all games go to Lucard first) - is that sometimes, I get a game after I've bought it. Thankfully, that's the purpose of receipts, for times when I'll, say, get NHL '11 in the mail a week after I bought it. So, back to Gamestop it went, and I decided to put it back into the gaming economy. What I SHOULD have done was taken the money and went to a small, indie shop, but there are no small indie shops anymore. Even withstanding that, I had a good little haul.

* Tales of the Abyss (PS2) GET! It's funny, because I'm not even a really big fan of Tales. I liked the original games, but after the success of Tales of Phantasia, Namco's been happy to shit the same game out, over and over and over again (and they wonder why they're losing money in America...). Still, my collector's instincts take over in times like this, and my collector's instincts tell me that 1) the price is never going to be lower than the $20 this went for, 2) It's better than Legendia (though Samuraiter says that game is underrated) and 3) if I ever get to play it, I have a few friends on my list that I can at least talk about the game with. Either way, it's a 70 or so hour RPG, and for $20, it could be a lot worse.

* Ivy the Kiwi? (DS) GET! For $20, I picked up a new game that was getting a lot of positive press. I took it home and broke it out, and... so far, I don't like it. It's like that Kirby game that came out a few years back for the DS, only more annoying to play. I spend half my time getting Ivy stuck in between pieces of ivy that I drew, and trying to make him go up them only seems to make him go the other direction. This could be something that I just need to practise with, but this was nothing more than frustration last night. Still, not bad for $20, and if push comes to shove, Aileen might like it more.

* Phantasy Star Portable 2 (PSP) GET! This would have been Etrian Odyssey 3 had it been available, but this lets me play the game with Aileen when she gets her copy from the site. That'll be fun, at the very least. I did like the original PSP, so this one will be good as well, though I'm not happy with having to activate my copy with a code... I don't recall this being announced as part of the game. I'm really getting tired of these PSP games just giving us these surprises.

Another game I tried at random earlier this week, that might be the game of the year:

VVVVVV (PC via Steam) GET! No, this breaks no new ground... but it doesn't intend to. This is a balls-hard, retro (like, REALLY retro... we're talking Tandy 1000 type) themed game that has some expert level design, and is a blast to play. I haven't had this much fun playing a game in a very long time, and best of all, it's $5, requires virtually no hardware to play it - if you can run Steam, you can run VVVVVV - and supports Steam Play, meaning you Mac freaks can play it, too. Just amazing, especially for that price. The only thing I wish is that it supported a game pad (it only supports keyboard play).

Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
shotglass
Sep. 21st, 2010 03:15 am (UTC)
Abyss is pretty fun - from a "fandom" perspective, it's got a lot of characters that are fun to extrapolate with, and from a simple gaming perspective, I was pretty happy with the battle system, how leveling worked. The graphics are nice, the plotline isn't amazingly complex, but is enjoyable (and it doesn't sit there and pander...). You'll be running back and forth a lot...

I will say that the final few fights, if you've been leveling right, are really disappointingly easy (I think I only had to try maybe three times? The first two were figuring out the strategy to use). It's the same way with Symphonia, really - by the time you've completely the game (what did I mean there? I accidentally this whole comment!) gotten to the end of the game, you're probably going to kick the shit out of the final boss.

Edited at 2010-09-21 03:16 am (UTC)
aitherion
Sep. 21st, 2010 04:23 am (UTC)
Abyss is a lot more fun than Legendia to play for extended periods of time, and honestly that's enough.
samuraiter
Sep. 21st, 2010 10:06 am (UTC)
As coincidence has it, another friend of mine on LJ (myaru) got her hands on Legendia at the same time you got your hands on Abyss. Hmm. I might have to revisit both. :-) I am very good at collecting Tales games, but not great at playing them to completion.

All in all, excellent haul. And bonus points for anything involving the Tandy. Lovely old computer.
vyctori
Sep. 21st, 2010 01:59 pm (UTC)
Legendia has a great story and characters, but the gameplay is the pits. Abyss has good gameplay, great characters, and a great story, as well as some pretty thorough world building, so hopefully it'll hold your attention for a while. Not that I'm expecting you to get as obsessive about it as I am, but….
dmajohnson
Sep. 21st, 2010 02:44 pm (UTC)
Legendia has a great story and characters, but the gameplay is the pits.

This. Legendia would be one of the best in the series if not for the frequent random battles that are all too similar to each other and take forever to defeat. A pity, too, since it has a nice, unique graphical style, and one of the single best soundtracks of all time.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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