…Not for fear of what the change might bring, but by the possible loss of any anchor I might have held onto tightly in order to maintain.
I’m moving into an apartment. Sounds minor, right? I’m moving from what many have considered to be a “toxic” environment. Here I am though, completely terrified at the concept now that it’s finally coming to fruition after I got back to Colorado four years ago. It’s a change in the status quo; the only thing I think I can hold onto to keep myself from freaking out from day to day. Having that change puts me on high alert for so many reasons.
I can’t say I like it. I know I need it, but I hate it because of how it’s going to affect me in the short term. It’s like waiting for a beating that you just have to shut-up and take. The metaphorical beating has a possibility of making me stronger, but it could break me as well. So, I’m inclined to not like it, I’m just going through with it regardless, short term mental health be damned!
What makes it so scary, is that it raises a lot of questions and possibilities that I’m forced to identify in the negative until things can fall into place. Questions like, ” If I remove negative X, what’s going to replace it?” and possibilities like, “If I’m away from the seemingly bad things in my life, and I’m a worse piece of shit than I originally thought, what then?”
The panic sets in when I think about it. It sets in HARD.
I’m aware of all the good this could mean for me as well, getting out of a bad situation, into a hopefully better one, I just can’t help thinking about all the possibilities that could leave me destroyed.
The only thing I can say to it, is that opportunity swings both ways; I made it this far, I suppose I can keep fighting what gets thrown at me til there’s either nothing left of it, or nothing left of me.
I know it took me a week and a half longer to get it done, but here it is! A first entry into my new life. It’s time for change.
Here’s some doom to comfort you til next time,
I keep being told to write things, and more things. I would, and do try, but I keep getting into the habit of not wasting the effort when I think I’ll just hit a brick wall in the middle of paragraph three. Also I’m kinda lazy.
Self-fulfilling prophecy type crap.
Anyway, I should just write regardless of any of that, even If Ido something I don’t enjoy, and turn this into a blog of sorts.
I never liked that idea, because my life isn’t that interesting (outside of the fights, booze, and occasional bullet flying overhead, also Dark Souls), so who the hell would wanna read about that? This blog was supposed to be for the rare occasions I finished a small blurb of something I felt was actually readable, delusion creeping in for those brief moments when I’m not trying to super edit, or rewrite the entirety of something I just wrote (this post included, it being the third draft and about 90% rewritten).
However, I suppose it benefits me to just write no matter what, even if it’s just what I’m thinking a few times a week, a rant here and there over something stupid, or hell just go back to reviewing things I’m looking over until that spark of inspiration creeps through and I can get a script or a few paragraphs done on any of the metric crap ton of ideas I have/had/will-have.
I guess this could just be the start.
For any sort of update, the Art monkey still art’s and even did a few things for myYoutube channel. So without my writing, He hasn’t had much in the way of ideas, because he’s just so very devoid of imagination. Pity him. I know I do.
Regardless of any of this diatribe, this is still something I would love to keep up with, as well as anything else that stimulates the mind without destroying it.
If that doesn’t comfort you, just look at this picture of Iggy Azalea as a Green Lantern. She takes to the uniform so well!
I think I have to begin this review by stating that I’m probably a bit what people might call “nostalgia biased” in that I’m a huge Mega Man/x fan. While I know there’s always differences in games, there’s expectancy of improvements or failings,in comparing these games to each other as well. That being said, here are my thoughts on Azure Striker Gunvolt.
When I first saw the reveal for it, I thought it was pretty nice with what I saw: Good aesthetics, nice sprite art, what looked like fun 2d-scrolling action. Having Keiji Inafune introduce it didn’t hurt at all either.
I would’ve waited a bit before getting it too, but then I saw it came with a bonus game with Beck from Mighty No. 09, so I had to have it ASAP. Bonuses all around. It goes without saying that I was happy to try this game out.
The story sets up telling you about the world where new types of psychics have started to appear. The Sumeragi Group quelled a lot of fears surrounding these “Adepts”, as they’re being called, by essentially kidnapping them, and torturing them to use their powers for themselves. Here’s where our Protagonist comes in.
Gunvolt works for the Quill organization, Anti-Sumeragi militants, and the game starts with GV rescuing a girl named Joule, whose adept power is a virtual entity named Lumen, whose song can be used to control adepts. The rest of the game consists of you fighting the Sumeragi Group Adepts a’la Mega Man style. Yeah. It’s one of those games with the overly dramatic plot.
The gameplay itself seemed competent in controls; standard movement worked well, a new-ish type of combat with the tagging system, and the kudos system to keep track of how many hits you can get without taking damage.
The tagging system works as follows: shoot a target with your gun and then you hit the RB on your 3ds, and ZAP, whats called your EP Field is enacted, hitting all the tagged targets, as few as 3 (and you can stack up to three on a single target) with your first weapon and as many as eight with weapons procured by progressing through the game.
There are some RPG elements as well: Leveling up and item farming.
Leveling up is fairly straight forward. You level up, you get higher HP, and at certain levels you get Skill abilities. Some skills give you buffs, some skills attack directly.
The item farming is a bit tiresome. You can “synth” upgrade items to boost your abilities like EP/HP Recharge, double/triple jumping/airdash, defense modification, etc.
I feel that these elements Pad the hell out of the game unnecessarily, especially synthesizing items. Each upgrade takes multiples of different Items, which are given at random, or in an uncovering bonus at the end of the stage, so you have to run through all the stages multiple times in order to get a single upgrade. I think I was about two-thirds of the way through the game before I was able to make my first one. Stage Ranks affect how many chances you can get at the end of the stage to uncover more items.
As for moving around, it’s standard 32bit-era 2d-sidescrolling: Jump, dash, jump dash, some double jumping to dodge. There is a wall jump, but there’s no place where you really use it. There’s no real secret areas to look for, you just find jewels, one in each main stage, and one in a secondary level. To give to Joule the jewels. Jewels for Joule.
One more bit about Joule. There’s a system where talking to Joule will allow her to help you in the game. If you die, and she so wills it, Joule will use Lumen to give you her “Anthem” which enhances your powers (unlimited air jumping, infinite EP gauge)and the music changes to a very J-poppy tune. The problem with this is that it happens only after you talk to Joule between levels, and even then is completely at random, so it’ll probably never happen when you actually need it.
The level design… I really didn’t care for much. There’s some interesting things to do, like one but so much of it was just uninteresting, or needlessly complex. The Sinner’s Row stage has you flipped upside down, with reversed vertical controls, which I thought was interesting. An example of complex would be the Subaquatic Base, where at one point you’re running away from rising water, only to be stopped by multiple barriers, and the water shorts out your EP field if you try to use it, and you drown if you’re not quick enough. It’s not “hard” its just a bit annoying.
There’s not a whole lot to say about in-stage enemies. Pretty standard fare for this type of game. I would say that there’s just not enough of them, and a bit too much space between groups, and not enough variety per each stage.
The Mini-bosses, when they show up, are neat, like a couple of times a tank-like mech, or a giant flower, or a spider-tank show up and break the monotony. On the lamer side, there’s mid-level parts where you Just fight wave after wave of enemies just trying to kill a siren.
The bosses are a bit different in terms of difficulty. None of them were hard as so much as they were cheap. Almost all of them have super moves that are insta-kills or impossible to avoid, and even some regular moves that just have no real window to dodge in. They attack in patterns, and unleash their supermove when they get to their third bar of health. Easy to predict, but hard to cancel/dodge.<Boss Bullshit “Suddenly Bullethell”,Boss Bullshit 3 “Lazy Prick”, Boss Bullshit 2 “Barely escapable bullshit”>
Graphically, the sprites look very crisp, everything stands out, the backgrounds are pretty, and there’s no visual lag anywhere. Not much else to say really. Well Done.
Stylistically, it reminds me heavily of the later Mega Man X games (x5 and x6 specifically) in both tone and aesthetics, with quite a bit of the Zero series as well. The characters are well styled, and very distinctive visually; nobody feels like a carbon copy of something else.
The bosses, however, I think are a bit too cluttered. Each one looks less like an “Adept” and more like a Digimon. They all have individual personalities as, though I couldn’t really tell you what those were, they only give you a couple of lines of dialogue that gives no motive outside of “I must kill you” but each saying it in their own way. As heavy as the story is, I’m sorry to say that’s really how all of the characters come off outside of Gunvolt himself, but only barely.
The game functioned very well, but didn’t fully use any of its functions, and wasn’t very difficult. I finished the game around 9 hours, but that was because after reaching the final stage, I went back to up my rank in some stages, and farm items for upgrades before finally beating the last, multi-staged boss. I heard there’s more stages after that, but you have to meet certain criteria, like beating the last boss using certain equipment, so I’ll keep playing for a bit longer, and try for the “True ending”.
At the end of the day, Azure Striker Gunvolt isn’t by any means bad: The story, while nothing special, is dialogue heavy, but has some nice twists, the gameplay has some problems, but still works well enough to be mastered, and the characters, while kind of flat, are visually interesting. It has some flaws, and quite a bit more padding than I’d like, but I found the game mildly enjoyable. I’d give it a 6/10 if I used such a metric… but I don’t.
I give Azure Strike Gunvolt an “Eh..” out of “good” . TTFN Readers.
Now, I don’t normally do this (I don’t mean posting… though I could stand to do that a bit more…), but I finally found a kickstarter I decided to back. A hat In time, as they’ve described it as a “…3D collect-a-thon platformer in the spirit of the classic Nintendo 64 titles you know and love!”
I’m deinitely not shy in saying that I do adore those style of platforming games. Running around looking for that last note, the 100th coin, Hell even the Scarabs in Star Fox Adventures. Though we’ll never speak of that game again. Yeah….
Anyway I support what they’ve done so far, and what they’re doing. They showed that they already did most of the work, and just needed some funding to dot the “i’s” and cross the “t’s” and basically just wanted to Pre-sell the game. A game that looks wonderful from my perspective.
So yeah, Heres some art the Monkey did because we’re both super psyched about it, and heres my contribution, promoting it through word of mouth, and sometimes forcibly with the power of the stare-down.
Go forth, Fund A Hat In Time! It’s a game that both looks good, and provides for a genre thats seemingly untouched by anyone outside of Nintendo these last few years, and are doing so in splendid style.
TOGETHER WE WILL DEFEAT THE MUSTACHE GIRL!
Majora was a dragon that lived in a timeless place, wearing armor that was told (in ridiculous legends), to grant its wearer incredible power. Every time the dragon encountered someone, for whatever reason, be it Warriors looking for glory, military trying to gain power, or even the lost souls looking for friendship. The dragon found that no matter what, they all grew greedy, and so he ate them.
One day, a traveler came upon the timeless place, with the frightening dragon, who offered to grant him a wish.
The man, claiming he wanted nothing, merely asked to know more about the dragon, pointing out that all with the dragons’ belly aching about people, there weren’t any around, and how sad that was.
At first, the dragon became angry, not wanting to be pitied by some random traveler, raging at him with boasts of the many he had devoured.
After threatening the traveler, he soon realized that he was right… and that he was weary of being alone, and unable to leave the timeless place.
The traveler, wishing to show kindness to the dragon, pulled a drum out of his belongings, and began to play a song. tum tum tum… tum tum tum…
Softly he played, and the dragon, remembering all of those he had eaten, lowered and rested his head… tum tum tum… tum tum tum…
As the traveler continued playing, the dragon began telling him tales of the countless people he had eaten, and how avarice had caused them to battle him, or betray him. For hours, the dragon told his tales in the timeless place, the traveler continuing his rhythmic drumming, and listening politely. Tum tum tum…tum tum tum…
The dragon finished his last tale, and in closing his eyes… at long last left the timeless place. The traveler put away his drum, and, still pitying the dragon, carved out of his armor a Mask, so that the dragon may go with him, and see the world outside of the timeless place.
For a while, the Mask was happy to be with the traveler, seeing the places he traveled, and hearing many tales, and seeing many happy, kind people. Until avarice had yet again showered upon the dragon, even in this form. Someone had stolen the Mask from the traveler.
Moving from hand to hand, each greedier and with more hatred, after decades, the Mask began to grow enraged, and mad, but unable to do anything about it. It was true that the dragons armor had incredible power, and the dragon themselves as well, so it’s no surprise that all that hatred, and anger, would warp the Masks original intent, or gaining freedom and kindness.
The Mask grew to hate more and more, until landing in the hands of the Happy Mask salesman, who wished to travel with the Mask. It was far too late, the Mask had other plans already, and was eagerly ready to find someone who felt betrayed as well.
As happenstance would have it, Skull Kid, who had been rejected by the townsfolk for his mostly harmless pranking, would run into the Happy Mask salesman. Already feeling the rejection from the townsfolk, he decided to be bad and steal the Mask…
Yeah, I’m kinda proud. If i feel like it, I’ll edit and rework it. Also, before anyone decides to get all snippy with me, I didn’t come up with the Idea, It was in the end of the Majora’s Mask manga by Akira Himekawa, all I did was fill in a few thigns here and there and put it into a folklore type story. See you next time Mega fans, Same Mega time, Same Mega Place, Mega