Ben's Week In Review: May 3
While it's great that the weather is getting warmer, I effing hate this time of year because the pollen mercilessly attacks my car. Bah.
Okay, WKC is coming...bring it!
So far this generation, I've really only been disappointed in most of the RPGs I've tried. I mean, I can say I liked both Eternal Sonata and Star Ocean: The Last Hope, but not enough to finish either, and the latter pissed me off towards the end of my 20 hours of play time. Yeah, Persona 4 is fantastic but I don't consider it a next-gen RPG, and the likes of Oblivion and Mass Effect just don't suit my tastes. Therefore, I turn my hopes to White Knight Chronicles, which is confirmed for North America and we now have some fresh details thanks to that PlayStation blog interview with US Producer Tsubasa Inaba. It's not true turn-based - they call it "action/turn-based," which probably means it's similar to Star Ocean - but I have high hopes for the combat. It better not be as lame as The Last Hope's, but based on that lone gameplay video we have, it appears to be a very different animal. I know it often takes a while for the RPGs to start rolling in any given generation, but this time, it's taking an inordinate amount of time. Or maybe it just seems that way.
I should mention that I liked Valkyria Chronicles a lot and it remains one of the best games on the PS3, but again...not entirely my style. The other RPG (besides FFXIII, of course) that I have my eye on is End of Eternity, which could be something very special. I still need to see some gameplay footage, but I've read a brief explanation of the battles and it sounds bad-ass. Guess we'll just have to wait and see.
Wheee!!! Katamari is coming back!!!
So the new and official announcement is simple: Katamari Forever will be exclusive to the PlayStation 3, and it'll be bigger and better than any iteration before it. I own all three Katamari titles thus far - two on the PS2 and one on the Xbox 360 - and I just love those games. I remember the first time I played it; I believe I got it in the mail to review (for another site, way back when) and I was like, "oh great, another no-name crappy Japanese title." But within five minutes, I was hooked. It's quite possibly one of the most insane concepts in video game history but it's damn surprising how well it works. Rolling around, picking up increasingly larger items, accompanied with kooky sound effects and that zany J-Pop soundtrack is just way too addicting...and I can't even explain exactly why. All I know is whenever they make a new game, I'm gonna buy it. And while I was annoyed that Beautiful Katamari didn't go to a Sony platform after the first two entries were exclusive to the PS2, Namco is making nice with all the PlayStation fans out there. And all I can say is- "thank you!"
Some of you may not be familiar with these games and if not, I strongly suggest picking one up. It really doesn't matter which one, but really, I'd recommend the sequel on the PS2, We Love Katamari. It's not "better" than Beautiful Katamari, per se, but for some reason, I remember it as being a lot longer...
Personal gaming update
So yeah, I'm still working my way through LittleBigPlanet, which is endlessly creative and entertaining. But as it's something I can pick up and play for a few hours here and there, I kinda wanted something deeper and I've already passed on Star Ocean. Well, I intend to get Resident Evil 5 and either Red Faction: Guerilla or inFamous for my birthday this summer so I can play those games, but in the meantime, there's nothing I desperately want. And because I'm still disappointed in the RPG lacking, I went and started a new game of Final Fantasy VIII. Yep, it's true. I usually start at least one new game of FFT and FFVII once per year but for some reason, I never started another game of FFVIII after beating it over ten years ago. Well, now's the time, even though I doubt I'll actually finish it; I just love the nostalgia of it, and I forgot how very singular the new battle style with the Draw and Junction systems were. I also forgot how addictive that Triple Triad Card game was... Jeebus. LOL I'm already playing too much in the first hour! And of course, I did absolutely everything when I played all those years ago: Omega Weapon dead, my three main characters maxed at Lv. 100, etc. ...probably won't manage that again.
As for the weird conundrum I'm in, I don't what the HELL is going on. I talked to both today and I can't even tell if one is pissed at the other, or if one is going to back off or whatever. All I know is that both are interested in...something. I don't even know how to respond to this mess. I wanna run and hide. I sense danger.
5/2/2009 Ben Dutka