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About Zera

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    Merriest of Mages
  • Birthday 09/02/1994

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  • Favorite Fire Emblem Game
    Shadow Dragon

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  1. Good RPGs about pirates/boats?

    The legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass has pirate-y stuff in it.
  2. Possible Spyro Trilogy Remake?

    Imagine if it's true, and then they make a Crash Trilogy + Spyro Trilogy Collection. That would be bomb.
  3. Your gameplay section only told me about old issues and how it's inferior to Xenoblade Chronicles, which already has mediocre gameplay. If you're trying to sell Xenogears to me, you have failed.
  4. SF Interviews 2.0 - Michelaar

    @Arcanite If there's anything you wanted to ask me in interview #154, but were unable to, I'm always available on the SF Discord server. Anyways, I vote Gebby
  5. While searching for a new XBLA game, I encountered some videos on Bangai-O HD like this one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrquNESyQHY My immediate thoughts were "This looks crazy (and good). It looks like something Treasure would make." I discovered that not only was it made by Treasure, but it had flown under my radar for over two years. Imagine being a die-hard Elder Scrolls fan, and not finding out about Skyrim until over two years after its release, due solely to its obscurity. Anyways, Bangai-O became my 2011 GOTY, beating Skyrim, Portal 2, Skyrim, Skyward Sword, Skyrim, and Skyrim.
  6. You need at least 8 hours of sleep each day, and an extra hour buffer because no one falls asleep instantly. So if you plan to wake at 9 AM, you should be tucked no later than midnight.
  7. Are you giving yourself 9 hours of bedtime? Any less than 9 full hours will make you groggy in the morning.
  8. Celeste: An Emotional Journey

    I've heard much praise about Celeste. For me, the sign of a good platformer is whether or not I'm motivated to get 100%. (Which is usually yes since I'm a completionist, but still.)
  9. Mario Kart Tour+The movie confirmed

    I don't get why a "moblie" Mario Kart is news. Nintendo's already made several... Given how limited phones are, I can't imagine how a phone-based MK wouldn't be worse than MK8D in every possible way.
  10. Title: Do You Think Steaming Games Is The Future of Playing Games? lol, I thought you were referring to Steam, the game distribution service.
  11. Shaq-Fu A Legend Reborn

    Are you implying that beat 'em ups died? Haven't you played Guacamelee? Or Muramasa?
  12. List of Wii U Exclusives There are some really nice games in there! You at least played Tropical Freeze or 3D World, right? @Reality @LucarioGamer812 @SuperIb For your 360s, I recommend Bangai-O HD. I still haven't found another game that gave me as much quality gameplay for $10... Right now only the PS3 is gathering dust in my home, but I intend to play it more at some point.
  13. Bingo. Since the player will spent much more time focusing on the characters than the ground they stand on, most developers will model them first and best. If the budget runs out though, there will still be passable floor and wall textures.
  14. Which fighting games and platformers do you like, then?
  15. Introduction Greetings, folks. This is my review of Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer, developed by Chunsoft and released on the DS in 2008. Although many gamers have at least heard of the "Mystery Dungeon" Pokemon spinoffs, fewer know there's an original Mystery Dungeon series with it's own mechanics and story. This game is a remake of the first Shiren the Wanderer game, which released on the Super Famicon in 1995. How I found this game Game designer Keith Burgun told me this was the best DS game. (His #2 and #3 are Advance Wars: Days of Ruin and Bangai-O Spirits. He has pretty good taste!) According to him, John Harris, and a very enthusiastic NeoGAF member, the original Shiren is not only the best console roguelike, but the best of its series, with future Shiren games slipping into grindy JRPG territory. As I'm not acquainted with roguelikes, I decided to try this one. What is Shiren the Wanderer? Shiren the Wanderer is very much a fantasy RPG, with swords, magic, a final boss, side quests, recruitable party members, etc. However, it is also a roguelike, which means not only are dungeons randomly generated, but you lose (almost) everything when you die. It's turn-based, grid-placed, and item management plays a huge role. Your goal is to traverse the dangerous Kobami Valley and climb Table Mountain to find the land of the Golden Condor. Item management? You can hold up to 20 items, which sounds like a lot - but it's not. Early on you'll encounter many useful items, and before you know it you'll be deciding which to take and which to consume or ditch. It's tricky, because not only are there are a TON of unique items, but ALL of them are useful. Even the Weed, which does nothing, can be beneficial in the right situation. Weapons, shields, and armbands offer stats and abilities while equipped. Arrows let you attack from a distance. Riceballs, herbs, and scrolls are single-use items. Staves fire a limited number of magic projectiles with unique effects. Jars hold or modify items placed in them. How do I play? Kobami Valley and Table Mountain make up a procedurally generated 30-floor dungeon, broken up by some towns. Along the way you'll find items and money, fight (or flee from) monsters, and utilize inns, blacksmiths, and shops that you pass by. Example 1: A Jar of Holding holds 3-5 items to expand your inventory, and Riceballs in jars never go rotten. But if a jar is cursed, you'll be unable to access its contents. Will you smash it to free your items, or hold a "dead slot" in your inventory until you find a Scroll of Blessing? Example 2: The Armor Ward is a strong shield, but it makes you hungry twice as fast. The Walrus Shield protects your items and money from being stolen. The Blast Shield halves damage from explosions. Will you pick one to save room, or carry all three and use them as needed? Example 3: An enemy is about to kill you, but you can kill it in one attack. Will you attack with a small risk of missing, or use a Staff of Sloth/Knockback/etc. to save yourself? The staff is guaranteed to work, but you'll have 1 less staff use. There's usually more than one solution to every problem, and because you never know exactly what items and monsters you'll find, there's seldom a 100% correct answer. The clear exception to this is Fay's Puzzles, a series of 50 single-floor challenges utilizing items, monsters, and some obscure mechanics you might not figure out on your own. These puzzles are the de facto tutorial of the game, and unlike in the original version where you could only do one per journey, here you can complete them all at once. The monsters The monsters in Shiren are unique in that nearly every one has a completely different ability. Rice Changers can turn random items in your inventory into Riceballs. Tiger Uhos can throw characters and enemies at each other, damaging both. Death Reapers can move twice per turn and travel through walls. Infernos are strengthened by fire attacks, and multiply in explosions. The powerful Master Hen, if weakened but not killed, turns into a normal Hen that runs away and gives 1XP. There are many more, but hopefully you get the point. The other thing is that if a monster kills another enemy or character, it will level up, promoting to a higher monster rank. Not only will it gain attack, defense, and health, but it may gain or improve abilities. If a Baby Tank kills an enemy with an arrow, it will become Popster Tank, with a high-damage, defense-piercing, area-of-effect cannonball attack - which makes additional kills even more likely. Skull Mages cast random magic, including a beneficial spell that speeds you up... but Skull Wizards, Skull Wraiths, and Skull Demons have increasingly horrifying effects, like paralyzing you or draining experience levels. Roguelikes don't mess around When you die or Give Up (and you will!), you're returned to Canyon Hamlet. You can also get there by spending Forever (1000 turns) on a dungeon floor, when the Winds of Kron tell you to get off his lawn (You get warnings at turns 700, 800, and 900.). You'll lose all experience, stat boosts, and items, but items you placed in town warehouses will remain, as well as progress you make on sidequests. In fact, nearly all sidequests require multiple journeys to complete, and offer benefits on future journeys, like a jar shop that is initially unavailable. This isn't to say you can't beat the game in one journey, but it does mean the adventure gets a little softer if you don't clear it quickly. Old-school design issues The jars, while they add a lot of interesting gameplay, can be fiddly. Do you know what it's like to enter a warehouse with 25 Jar of Holding [5]s on the floor, not remembering what you put in them? Okay, I'll pick up this - drat, my inventory's full. Then I'll trade these jars, put these in here, pick up this... and it gets very slow and clunky, very fast. I'm shocked the developers didn't use the touchscreen to make warehouse management faster. There are also some weird things with side quests. Some events will only trigger if you have a specific party member, or none at all. Allegedly, if you don't punch Pekeji when given the opportunity, he will leave forever, permanently locking you out of a party member AND a bonus dungeon. This didn't happen to me, but I'd sure be pissed if it did. How long is this game? Shiren the Wanderer may take you 20+ hours to beat, but this is due to difficulty, not length. However, it is not padded - the story is light, special effects are minimal, and cutscenes are rare. Almost all your time will be spent walking into rooms, and walking out of rooms with new bruises. Now's here's the surprise - after clearing Table Mountain, six bonus dungeons become available, and most of them are longer. In fact, up to 90% of this game is post-game content. And each dungeon has its own twist on the gameplay. The Kitchen God shrine might be the best. It gives you a weapon called Bufu's Cleaver, which sometimes turned killed monsters into meat. You can eat meat to transform into that monster and gain its abilities, or transform another monster by throwing meat at it. This Kirby-esque mechanic isn't even present in Table Mountain, but it's so cool, you could build a entire Mystery Dungeon around it. The fact that they actually did is amazing - most developers would save this for a sequel. What extra features are in this remake? If you die in this version, another player can rescue you (up to three times per journey). They'll have to brave the dungeon to find you, but if they succeed, not only will you continue as if nothing happened, but they will keep the items they found AND a bonus item. It's win-win, and only requires that someone risk their life and possessions. With Nintendo Wi-Fi being shut down, this feature requires a local friend who owns the game. Otherwise, you can use the online rescue password generator someone made, but it's time-consuming. In this version you can travel backwards through the first half of the game. (Floor 15 is a point-of-no-return.) Originally, if you wanted to use and upgrade equipment through multiple journeys, you had to send them back to the Canyon Hamlet warehouse via a rare Courier or an even rarer Warehouse Jar. In this version, nothing will stop you from making a Firebrand+99 and trivializing Table Mountain, except your endurance for tedious backtracking. Allowing less skilled players to make the game easier is one thing, but this ability to grind directly opposes the goal of roguelikes, which is to test your skill and not your patience. This game sounds interesting, but what's it actually like to play? Glad you asked. I recorded some of the funnier moments of my journeys... Conclusion Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer is the best (if not only) roguelike I've ever played. While it lacks refinement in a couple areas, it nonetheless offers some of the tightest and most interesting RPG gameplay I've seen in years, and there's enough content and difficulty that it will last anyone a very long time. 8/10 (Great!)