Ben's Week In Review: September 2
Wow, big week. :)
You just keep topping yourselves, Square Enix
You know, if I was in charge of that company, I'd actually have to try really hard to sound so utterly disconnected from an extremely vocal fan base that I helped create and cultivate for decades. Really. I'd have to live in a hole in the ground. They've said in the past they listened to the fans when making Final Fantasy XIII-2 and yes, I have defended that game and I did have a lot of fun playing it. ...I just had to convince myself it wasn't really a "Final Fantasy" game. How is that listening to the fans? Seriously? How is Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII anything like what the fans have said they want?
On a similar note, how the hell is Final Fantasy Versus XIII "nostalgic" in any way? What, because it might have real towns? And the new FF is more action-based (now we'll be controlling Lightning completely in battle), we don't even know if we'll have a party, and it'll have a goddamn clock that keeps ticking? Wow, sounds great for the twitch-crowd. I'm sure that's what they asked for, if they even cared at all. But what did we ask for, the fans?
It boggles the mind. It really does. Hey Square Enix, do you remember these days? No? Thought not.
Ground Zeroes ought to be plenty interesting
It was great to hear Hideo Kojima announce his new project, which should be freakin' cool. If you haven't seen the game's video debut, you should definitely check it out; that Fox Engine is capable of doing some pretty amazing things on the visual front. It's mostly cut-scenes as far as I can tell, except for the last minute or so, where we actually see good ol' Snake moving about. It just looks amazing, and I'm glad most people don't seem too annoyed at the change in environmental structure. I was worried that an open world would put the story on the back burner (which often happens), and that would be a critical mistake for this franchise.
But Kojima doesn't believe in allowing the story to play second fiddle to the rest of the production, as evidenced by all his games and that trailer. And for these types of adventures, I believe that's the way it should be. I never thought I'd see the day when I was more interested in the MGS series than the FF series, but hey, you did it to yourselves, Square.
Personal gaming update
I really tried to get more into Madden NFL 13 because it's definitely a great game and I'm a football fan. But I just don't have the drive to lose myself in sports sims anymore, no matter how good they might be. Besides, EA Sports does have to take a few more steps in regards to authentic gameplay in order to reclaim my full attention. I want to start a new game in Sleeping Dogs because I rushed a lot of it to get the review done, and I've got a review code for LittleBigPlanet Vita. I'm also supposed to take a look at the Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault private beta, which I hope to do later this week. Should be fun.
And with September here, more games are on tap. Borderlands 2 is probably the biggest for most, but I'm really looking forward to Dead or Alive 5. Then October gets here and the insanity really begins...and it won't stop until...let's see, April maybe. Geez.
9/1/2012 Ben Dutka