Friday 31 August 2018

Six Dragon Quest Games I Want To Try

Somehow, I’ve been writing and talking about JRPGs on the internet for a few years and I’ve still never played a Dragon Quest game. This might be because one of the first JRPGs I fell in love with in high school was Final Fantasy X since Final Fantasy is much more popular in Australia and since Final Fantasy X is a more of a modern-looking RPG, it definitely influenced the kind of aesthetics I like in JRPGs. Despite being a big fan of what some consider to be its rival series, Dragon Quest seemed interesting the first time I heard of it. Akira Toriyama’s art looks great in it which makes its aesthetic more appealing, it's got a cute slime mascot, turn-based battles and I’ve always wondered how its fantasy stories and worlds compare to others in the genre. With the English release of Dragon Quest XI coming up soon, I’m strongly reminded again that I still haven’t touched this series, so here’s a list of games in the series I want to try to help me get into this classic JRPG series.

Friday 24 August 2018

First Impressions: Valkyria Chronicles 4 (Played on PS4 and Nintendo Switch, also coming to Xbox One and PC, Demo)

While stories about war aren’t typically something I enjoy, Valkyria Chronicles 4’s complex tactical battles and characters may have found a way to make this one interesting for me. As someone new to the Valkyria Chronicles series, I was pleased to see its tactical battle system that combines turn-based and action gameplay well felt as smooth to play as it looked in trailers and combined the two styles well, along with its artstyle and many deep mechanics making the experience stand out from other tactical experiences. Topped off with a narrative that keeps things feeling light-hearted enough in a story with a serious premise, Valkyria Chronicles 4 is a great tactical experience so far and left me much more keen to try its full game next month as a new player of the series.

Friday 17 August 2018

First Impressions: Yakuza Kiwami 2 (Demo, PS4)

If you’re like me and enjoyed the outrageous combat, outlandish villains and wide-range of mini games available in Yakuza games like the recent Yakuza 6, Yakuza Kiwami 2’s version of these things in its demo makes it look like an intriguing experience. With a new city to explore, Kiwami 2 features a lot of what’s made more recent games in the series feel good mechanically, along with a stylish visual flare that make it easy to forget that Yakuza 2 was originally a PS2 game. With a few new mechanics that save it from feeling too similar to the last Yakuza game and a wealth of new activities in this demo alone that keep the charm of the Yakuza series while adding plenty of new things to play with, Yakuza Kiwami 2 seems to be a satisfying new take on an older game in its series that is easy to pick up for those who’ve played the newer games in the series.

Friday 10 August 2018

Review: Octopath Traveler (Nintendo Switch)

In a world of modern graphics and one track story paths, Octopath Traveler is unique. With its premise of telling eight different stories in one world, Octopath Traveler gives you the opportunity to choose the order and flow of how you want to play through its interesting seperate stories, with the choice of playing as many as you want at a time offering a custom gameplay experience. While having to level up your characters each time you want to try a new one from its eight can make the experience run a little long, it makes each experience feel like a journey of its own in this world harboring its own lore that leaves a connecting thread to each story if you play them all, but also has each one stand well enough on its own. All of its unique storytelling partnered with a great battle system that makes finding and exploiting weaknesses a rewarding process and its class actions that make each character useful in different ways make Octopath Traveler a satisfying JRPG with no shortage of things to do and a great world to play in.

Friday 3 August 2018

JRPGs I Played in July 2018

With eight story paths to follow and a mid-month release, my July went exactly how I expected it to and was full of a lot of Octopath Traveler and time with my Switch. I began the month on the tail end of Ys VIII and immediately jumped over to Octopath Traveler, so my PS4 hasn’t seen that much love this month but I’ve enjoying playing the Switch both on my TV and with me on the go and the extra time I’ve been able to get into my games. The only other games I played were a few smartphone JRPGs for times like being at work where it would be inappropriate to pull out my Switch and for some special collaborations, but I only put a small bit of time into these because I was into already big games on the go and didn’t feel the need to play much else. So in what was a month full of portable goodness, here are the JRPGs I Played in July.