Anime Games on the Wii (Part II)

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Well, once again my blog is being released a bit later then I intended. I was partway through my review when I got distracted by several releases including Call of Duty: World at War (which has great online play on the Wii) and Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of The New World. I gotta say, playing Call of Duty: World at War online is awesome on the Wii. Mostly because, unlike Medal of Honor Heroes 2, I don't suck at it. MWAHAHA!! Another n00b bites it!

Also, I got Eternal Poison on the PS2 and I'm hoping to finish Persona 3 before my copy of Persona 4 shows up. (Probably won't happen, I know.)

Now where was I.... Oh, right. Review.

Yeah, I'm easily distracted. Heh...

Naruto: Clash of the Ninja Revolution

Naruto: Clash of the Ninja Revolution is a game I was actually kinda looking forward to, mostly because the Ultimate Ninja games on the PS2 were actually pretty solid for licenced products. It was only after I bought the game that I clued in that Clash of the Ninja had a completely different developer behind it... Whoops...

Something tells me I'm going to get a lot of milage of of that animation in future.

Anyway, first for the good news about the game. Unlike Bleach: Shattered Blade, Clash of the Ninja Revolution supports both the ****c controller and GameCube controller, which provides a great alternative to swinging the remote around like a nutjob. Also, Clash of the Ninja Revolution has more modes of play. Granted, most of them are fighting game standards like Survival and Time Attack, but hey, I'm not going to complain.

The bad news is that there are only twenty characters to play as, about half of Ultimate Ninja 2, and like Bleach: Shattered Blade more then half of them are locked away.

Now I know I complained abut this in my last review, but why the hell should I pay forty bucks for a game and then jump through hoops to get most of the characters?

To start, you can't unlock anyone until you play through Mission mode. Mission mode is a series of nineteen battles, each with specific conditions for victory. Mission mode also follows a specific storyline from Naruto, namely the Chunin exams arc, which was also the storyline used for the Ultimate Road storyline in Ultimate Ninja 2 Why did they choose this? Not a clue. It certainly wasn't so they could use clips from the anime, because all the narrative is done with still images and voice acting, a technique that was running on fumes a decade ago.

The biggest problem with this is that, in order to stick to canon, you aren't allowed to choose who you're playing as in these missions, something I hated when Ultimate Ninja 2 did it. On top of that, the objectives for victory aren't always clear. Sometime it'll ask you to use a special attack to finish an enemy, but won't tell you how to do it. One mission asks you to use Sasuke and beat someone with "Chidori".

Chidori? What the f*#k?! Wasn't that the blue haired girl in Full Metal Panic who wailed on Sousuke with the giant paper fan?


PWN'D!

I thought giant fans were Temari's shtick in this anime.

Anyway, you'll need the manual to tell you what these special attacks are because the in-game attack directory doesn't list them.

Once again, it's English only in the voice acting department. Fortunately, the English voice acting is tolerable (although if I hear "Believe It!" shouted at me one more time....) unlike Shattered Blade's ear-bleedingly bad offering.

Complaints about mission mode aside, the game plays reasonably well and supports up to four players at once, which is certainly a nice feature. And while I complained about the character unlocking, the odd thing is that the characters are pretty much the only things to unlock in this game. Unlike the Ultimate Ninja games there isn't a bunch of art, video clips and sound clips to collect which is a tad disappointing.

All of this may be a moot point since Clash of the Ninja Revolution 2 is already out and has addressed some of the issues I brought up here. At this point the only reason to buy this one is if you're a Naruto fan, but you don't have the cash to shell out for the new game. Otherwise, just but the new game or the latest set of Uncut DVDs instead.

Overall Score: 6.8 (for Naruto fans) 5.0 (for everyone else)

In part three we move on to One Piece: Unlimited Adventure...

Metal Gear Solid-The Old and the New

Well, I finally tracked down MGS: The Twin Snakes for the GameCube... and the strange thing about it is how similar it is to the PS1 original. Let's face it, Resident Evil really needed a facelift. MGS was already great, so there wasn't much here to tweak. The visuals are indeed a lot better on the GameCube, but this game actually made me appreciate how brilliant the PS1 original already was.

But, if you have a Wii or a GameCube you should still try and play Twin Snakes, if only to see the upgraded scenes of Meryl in her underwear...

Did I say that out loud?

Crap...

Anyway, that's all for now. Until next time... beware the wrath of the Chidori...

Now that could make for a good game...

Anime Games on the Wii (Part I)

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Yeah, I know. It's been a loooong time since my last blog. Anyway, today I'm here to start out a three part blog on licenced anime games on the Wii. Truthfully, I'm disappointed that some of the most promising games never make it over here...

Okay, I just really want that Haruhi Suzumiya PS2 game. Can you blame me?

Unfotunately, games like that never seem to cross the Pacific. But, for this series we'll start with...

Part 1-Bleach: Shattered Blade

I had some fairly high hopes for this one, cause I thought Bleach would make for an excellent game. That said, I was a little discourage by the reviews of the game which ranged from meh to god-awful.

Well, first things first. If you do not give a rat's ass about Bleach this game is not for you.

The licence is actually one of the few things this game really has going for it. That and the graphics which are pretty stylish. What doesn't work out so well?

1) Character Selection-Granted, the game does have a ton of characters from the series, but almost two thirds of them need to be unlocked by playing through various modes. I wouldn't mind that too much if the characters you started out with made more sense. Why is Matsumoto available from the start but Rukia isn't? I don't get it.

2) Game Modes-Sadly, Shattered Blade isn't exactly heavy on different ways to play. The Episode Mode is supposed to be the big deal here, but most of the playable charaters don't have their own story to play through in Episode Mode (not that it matters since most of the stories are unbelievably boring). The other modes are fairly typical. There's Urahara's Shop where you can buy bonus items, but so far, I've found that you get way more cash than you can spend most of the time.

3) Voice Acting-If there's one thing I hate in games like this, it's being limited to the English voice actors. Especially when the English voice acting is as bad as it is here. It's not even that Resident Evil so-bad-it's-funny acting, it's so bad it hurts your ears bad.

and last, but not least...

4) The Controls-The game requires you to flail the remote either vertically, horizontally or to use thrusting motions for various chops, slashes and stabs respectively. Holding the A or B button while doing this results in a Critical or Special attack. Sounds fine, except that like so many lukewarm games on the Wii, the gestures don't always translate correctly.

That being said, I didn't think this was a terrible game. I did get some fun out of it, but it was mostly because I enjoyed the source material more than what Sega actually did with it for the game. It's unfortunate that, for now anyway, this is the only home console game based on the series. Hopefully, there will be better games to come.

Overall Score: 6.5/10 (for Bleach Fans), 4.5 (for everyone else)

In part two, I look at Naruto: Clash of Ninja Revolution.

Going Backwards

Recently, I started tracking down GameCube games I missed out on. Thanks to the Wii's backwards compatability I'm finally able to try out some of the exclusive GC games I missed out on. The first ones I got were Resident Evil (the REmake), Resident Evil Zero and Metroid Prime. As you can see, I've managed to get a few more since then, but I'm still trying to track down MGS: Twin Snakes for now.

Now iz ze time in ze blog vhen we dance!

See you next time. ^-^

Metal Gear Essentials and Wii Games Update

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Metal Gear Solid Essentials

Well, without a PS3, I couldn't get MGS4, so I celebrated by getting the MGS Essentials to fill the gaps in my MGS collection. I've finished the original MGS before, but that was my cousin's copy and the only way I'd get it from him now is to pry it from his cold dead hands.

The collection doesn't have much is the way of extras, but the first thing I did was pop in MGS to see if it was still any good after all these years. Surprisingly, it is. Sure, the visuals are seriously dated but the game is still as fun to play today as it as then.

Mario Kart, Then and Now

Super Mario Kart spent a lot of time in my SNES, and Mario Kart Wii is awesome, even if I can't play with the wheel. (I still need an analog stick to drive, what can I say). So to everyone out there, be sure to send me your Friend Codes. (And if you have codes for Mario Strikers or SSB Brawl, send those too.

Wii Games Up

No More Heroes

I hate it when people say, If you liked (Insert Name of Game Here), you'll love (Insert Name of Game Here) but if you liked Suda 51's Killer 7, you'll like No More Heroes.

I wasn't going to bother mentioning this game, but then I saw this:

In order to promote the game, Suda 51 published a series of cosplay photos of Japanese models dressed as Sylvia Christel.

Talk about knowing your target audience. ^-^ Check out some of the pictures I found in my PlaySylvia album.

Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles

I kinda wish RE2 and Code: Veronica were included in the lineup for this one, but this is an addictive shooter. Now all we need is the Wii version of Resident Evil Zero and maybe that Silent Hill arcade shooter and we're set.

Thanks for reading!

Be sure to leave comments or else, I'll get depressed.

Or not....

I've got a theme going now. A theme of Roses

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For the handful of you who actually pay any attention to my profile, you might have noticed I've changed things up a bit recently. I've built my profile and forum images to fit a theme. Namely, Reiko Hinomoto.

Truth be told, it started with some animations I found. I embedded them in banners and put the in my forum signature. Then I decided I may as well change my avatar to match. After spending all that time toying around with my graphics programs I decided, what the hell, I'll make a new banner for my profile too.

I just wish I didn't have to redo it so the tabs didn't block the text on the bottom. Why did I bother with all this?

MySignature Banners:

Haruhi Suzumiya comes to DVD

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One of the greatest anime series of the last ten years has finally come to English DVD. Yup, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is now available in English. I loved this series to death when it was on the fansub circuit and when I heard about the uber-DVD box for the first volume I knew I had to have it. But, wait, fansub fans! Don't throw out those fan translated episodes just yet!

You see, Bandai has put the episodes on this DVD in *chronological* order not the *broadcast* order.

What does that mean? Well, if you're not familiar with the series, the episodes were shown out of chronological order deliberately. But to make the series more accessable, Bandai put the episodes in the "correct" order (with the exception of "The Adventures of Mikuru Asahina" which remains the first episode).

Now, I don't mind this too much, but I would have liked it if Bandai had left the order alone. The biggest drawback to this change is in the episode previews. In the original previews we got Kyon and Haruhi bickering over the episode number. Now we just get Nagato announcing the title of the next episode, which is kind of a downer.

Still, for Haruhi nuts like myself the Special DVD is a must have. Aside from the special box it comes with a copy of Haruhi's hair ribbon (I have no idea what to do with it), a pencil board, a Haruhi-ism iron-on and the Hare Hare Yukai single CD.

Now, the special edition of Vol. 2, due out on the 3rd of July, comes with a ton of extras too. Including a DVD of the first five episodes in the broadcast order. So maybe we'll be able to get both orders.

More on this when the DVD is in my hands.

SCEA's $1200 PS3 Bounty

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SCEA Presindent Jack Tretton recently promised $1200 to anyone who could find a PS3 still on shelves. Penny Arcade took the challenge and in an hour spotted several PS3s netting a "bounty" of $13,200 for their efforts (assuming SCEA actually pays out).

Is it just me or is the PS3 on the road to being the next Dreamcast?

It's not Boxing Day anymore dammit!

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I was at EB Games today, partly cause I had gifts to buy for my cousin, who like me is a gamer and partly cause I wanted to buy stuff for myself.

I was surprised how nuts the place was. The line for the cashier went from one end of the store to the other and along the back wall. I was under the impression that this insanity ended after the 26th and then I remembered this crap goes on all week.

Geez. And I was just in the damn mall for games and anime DVDs. Get the hell out my way, bargain hounds.

Computer Woes

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I was offline for sometime recently when Windows XP crashed on me and I found out it was because of a hardware problem, namely that the motherboard needed to be replaced. It was gonna cost me $800 dollars just for the replacement board, but fortunately the computer was still under warranty with Gateway, so I got it fixed by them for free.

That's the good news, the bad news is that I have to reinstall all my programs and track down all my lost files. Sigh.

The PS3's Mall Tour

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I got a chance to play the PS3 on it's mall demo tour. So is the system worth the hype? For my part I think the people playing 8 grand for it on EBay are insane, but it is a pretty damn impressive system though.  

Bidding on a rare PS2 game

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I've recently been on EBay to track down a copy of the elusive Fatal Frame 2: Crimson Butterfly for the PS2.

I won the auction, so now I just need to hope my seller comes through.

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