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Ovirew Blog

Windows 10 Approaches...

A mere five days from now, Microsoft is scheduled to release their new operating system, Windows 10, to the masses. July 29th will likely be a busy day for the company's servers, as people flock to experience the new version of Windows on their PC's, laptops, tablets, smartphones, and even the XBOX One.

I haven't really talked a lot about it, but I am pretty excited about downloading Microsoft's new OS as well. Of course there's always that risk that I'll try it and not like it, or not like certain things about it... But I'm fairly optimistic about the new OS.

I'm not even really sure what I will gain from this upgrade, if anything. But maybe the design will be more organized, or make more sense than Windows 8 did. At least maybe it will be an improvement for the XBOX One GUI, which I feel was actually better in many ways on the 360 - specifically in the early years. I'm not sure.

Last night I spent a lot of time thinking about all of the time I've spent on the computer over the years. I've spent so much time with Windows. ...Of course, I'm not so sure how much computers have helped me over the years - maybe it's been 50/50 good and bad.

For the sake of newness though, I am sure I will enjoy this new version of Windows 10, at least for the first couple of weeks. And maybe, just maybe, I'll feel that same sort of contentedness that I felt whenever I upgraded to XP, or Windows 7. I wonder what kinds of games and new programs the OS will come with, if any?

I guess in a few days I'll finally see what all of those beta users have been talking about for a long time coming. And who knows? If I like Win10, maybe I'll even do some blogs here and talk about neat little things I've discovered while playing around with it.

~ Ovirew

Lack of Accomplishment. No way Out? 7-23-15

I've grown up pretty much as an outcast from people my own age. Thinking back to all 13 years of school, as well as my many dead frienships, it makes sense to me why that is. But that still doesn't mean it doesn't bother me sometimes.

At the age of 27, I notice that I am comparing my accomplishments to those of my peers more frequently. It bothers me every time I see that someone around, just above, or even under my age has a much better job than I do. I realize that in a lot of cases these people have actually worked to get where they are, and are fully deserving of it. But frankly, I just think a lot of people don't deserve what they have, and are only there because that's kind of the natural order of things. Roles need filled, the responsibility falls onto a new group. That doesn't mean there aren't more deserving candidates.

I compare really everything to my peers, and perhaps it'd be true to say I always have. Number of sexual partners, experience with and knowledge of alcohol, number of jobs held and length of time with those jobs, confidence...etc, etc. And I'm not even a competitive person. Nor do I think that a lot of these things have any real bearing on what makes a 'good' person. It still bothers me though. I start to wonder what all I've done wrong with my own life, why it takes me so much longer to get anywhere than anyone else. Maybe the only good answer is that I am just not as fast as everyone else, maybe I have a hard time of letting go and moving on?

I guess each story is unique, and we all have our own problems to deal with.

It doesn't make sense to me why some people at my job who have been there for a shorter period of time make more than me. At least one guy does, and I thought maybe it's because he has kids? But then, my other friend has a kid, has been working there the same amount of time, and is very reliable - and he actually might make less than I do. There doesn't seem to be any real justification.

Well, in other news it's been really nice outside lately. We are in the midst of a pretty much perfect Summer. But I feel, somehow, 'trapped' here, unable to really experience that. I have to save all of my remaining vacation days for a planned trip, and I can't just go out and go wherever I want despite living in the land of the free. I have no money, and I really don't know where I would go.

I really feel like I need to regroup, but I'm not sure what to do about anything. I feel like I'm wasting away what could be some of the best years of my life.

~ Ovirew

Update - 7-17-15

Like I tend to want to do, I am making a more positive blog to contrast my previous, mostly-negative blog. This will be a brief blog as well, just an overview of sorts.

So where I'm at right now is kind of an uncertain place. Five years ago I moved away from home, and I spent my first year or two adjusting to my new location. I found fairly stable work, and have held this particular job now for a longer period of time than I have any other job I'd had - almost 3 years now. I've been in my current department now for about a year and a half, and while there are some things I like about it, I still find myself getting angry and stressed out about things frequently.

A year ago I started college alongside my wife, and while things seemed easy enough the first quarter, they steadily became more involved. I've reached the point where a lot of our more recent classes require knowledge from the first four quarters, and there is an increased need for the use of mathematics in the work - aside from that, I really don't understand what the hell we're talking about half of the time in class anymore. I lost a great deal of interest in school since last year, partly because of the school itself, other students, the courses, and an uncertainty that this is really the field I want to work in.

Last month I got married. And now I'm looking forward to more upcoming trips, though I still long for a grand vacation to somewhere farther away. With my goal of getting married fulfilled, and work becoming more irritating in recent weeks, I almost feel as though I've rekindled my interest in moving away again. But I know that isn't an option, the way things currently are.

Well, that's what's on my mind for now. Til next time...

~ Ovirew

Vicious Cycle and other updates

It's been a little while, so I'll post something.

Since my last post, I had another birthday. Another year closer to 30, but still far enough away that I still feel young enough. Things haven't changed too much since last year, but I guess I could count my improvements with friendships as being small victories. I like to try to look back and say I've learned more and improved in some ways from the previous year of my life, and I guess I can at least say that I like how my tastes in music have changed the past year.

I still want to do a lot of the same things I wanted to do last year. I have already gone on two trips this Summer, and a third is scheduled for towards the end. I will likely take at least one more trip to see my parents soon. But I still feel like there is some other trips I could have gone on this year, other things I could have and should have done. For now all I can do is focus on these upcoming trips I am likely to take, and make the most of those. Maybe 2016 will be a better year for that kind of stuff. ...Who knows.

On my birthday I finally got a copy of Majora's Mask 3D. I'm excited about it, and I've played it some, but for whatever reason I guess I'm really not in much of a mood to play my 3DS, or at least Zelda. Tonight I tried playing some Halo MCC, and while most of my matches didn't go that great I did have one pretty decent 4 vs 4 team slayer match in Halo CE, on the Team Slayer list. I really don't know what I want to do as far as video games right now. Maybe I'm really out of the whole mood of things lately, and would much rather be doing something else?

Tonight I sat down and watched two movies (one was only about 30 minutes) and a few episodes of a cartoon with my wife. We listened to some music. She played Zelda for a bit. It was nice, haven't done anything like that in a while. I still wish we could have done more with that time - like go for a walk, or talk, or even work on homework together. Time goes so fast sometimes. I think I've come to realize that I get really bored when I'm alone in the house after a while. I want to treasure that time I do have to spend with my wife, but because of our differing work schedules I spend much of my free time alone.... And then I'd rather use some of that time to just sleep.

The weeks just kind of seem to blend together lately. For several days in a row, we've had larger trucks than usual at work, and a few of those days we had a less-than-full staff. I've generally wasted a lot of my mornings my sleeping in late, and after getting through each week of work I'm greeted with two nights of school. And then a morning of school followed by work. I think I've reached the point where school is really getting to me, and my response is to simply not give two fucks about it. I feel pretty much the same way about work half of the time. My back has been aching since sometime on Tuesday, and I'm still not sure what caused it, but I hope things go back to normal with that soon.

I feel like I've become kind of stretched thin. There are all of these expectations of me - at work, at school, by friends, from my wife, and from day-to-day life.

For example, I don't mind giving my friend a ride home after work, and sometimes it's nice to talk for a bit or stop somewhere on the way to dropping him off. But then some days I think, that is sooner that I could be at home, and less gas I could waste. That's less stops I could be tempted to take where I could end up spending money on junk food. That's my car I'm basically sharing with this other person, the passenger seat is basically theirs' now - it used to be my wife's seat. And it's not like he lives far out of the way, or it's a really big issue. It's just that honestly, it's one more expectation I feel like I need to fulfill for the sake of a friend.

All sorts of little things like that can add up over time, wear down on a person. I start screwing something by spending too much time on something, and not enough on something else. Much like a regular 3-day cycle on Majora's Mask, you kind of have to pick and choose what you want to do from day to day. And that is something I kind of suck at.

Due to all of my overdue homework assignments, and school, I feel like my days off are essentially worthless. But I keep sacrificing those assignments and even school itself because I don't care, and I want to relax and rest. I just wonder if there's ever going to be a way out of the mess. I feel like I'm pretty much screwed.

Now, I just wanna get some sleep.

Gameless Week

For the past week I haven't played much in the way of games, and I've been okay with that. I have given some thought to trying the Master Chief Collection again, but then that might have just been a fleeting thing this afternoon.

I think I am sort of burnt out on games for now, maybe. And, maybe it's possible that E3 will remain as the highlight of gaming for me for this Summer.

Anyway, I could probably use a break from it all.

~ Ovirew

Child of Light: A Shining Classic RPG in the Rough

The other month I was pleased when Child of Light was given away for free on Games with Gold, since it was a game I'd been looking forward to since a few years ago on the PS3. I still hadn't gotten around to playing the game - needless to say I have a lot of options when it comes to video games I own. But finally my wife remembered that we had the game recently, and set about playing it.

And after like a day or two, she'd completed it, and had nothing but good things to say. I had been somewhat skeptical, having played my fair share of RPGs over the years, but seeing the game in action caught my attention. After all, it had been some time since I'd played the demo back when. When I started a save file for this game the other night, I expected a fairly casual RPG adventure. What I didn't realize was just how fairly meaty this game actually is.

In Child of Light you play as a young Princess named Aurora. According to the game's story she has died, following the separation of her parents, but somehow Aurora has continued living in a strange magical alternate reality where her kingdom of Lemuria is in shambles.

Aurora befriends a small teardrop creature, and sets out to help people and search for a way back home. Along the way she acquires a sword, and becomes capable of flying around after sprouting faerie wings.

You can control Aurora and fly all around the maps of each area, or walk on foot when necessary. Obstacles, such as thorny vines, will hurt Aurora and deal damage to her if she flies too close to them - providing an extra layer of focus to the gameplay.

The firefly/teardrop sidekick that follows Aurora around can be used to solve puzzles, unlock special kinds of chests, and gather some faraway restorative orbs with the right stick. As an added bonus, a second player can control this character on their own.

Monsters appear throughout maps, and when touched execute turn-based battle encounters. Battles are pleasantly more involved than in some simpler RPGs, restricting the player to two party members on the field at a time, though they can be switched out during turns.

The battle system reminds me a bit of Grandia in particular, since character turns are determined by speed, and can be canceled with well-timed attacks. There's also a pretty solid elemental system in place.

As Aurora and her comrades fight monsters, the firefly character can also aid the player by either healing characters or slowing down an enemy monster, at the cost of its energy supply. As battles wage on, he becomes depleted of energy, eventually having to gather more from a glowing 'wish flower', or else waiting for the energy to restore on its own.

Outside of battle, characters gain Skill Points, which can be spent to acquire attribute increases, new abilities, and more powerful forms of existing abilities. Planning out your characters' multiple pathways of skill growth is fun, and can change what is available to you in the present greatly.

You meet an assortment of party members as the game progresses, but during my playthrough so far I've met 3. Aurora is like your warrior, but she can also use Light offensive magic. Rubella is the party's resident cleric and healer. Finn is the elemental mage. And the rest of the characters fill familiar fantasy roles.

The game is quite endearing though, and I found myself genuinely liking the world and its characters. The fantastic art direction and rhyme-y dialogue also helps to make this an adventure any RPG fan can be fond of.

CoL doesn't feature character equipment, but does have an equipment system of sorts with Oculi. Oculi are these stones you'll sometimes obtain from chests and battles, which can be used to augment your weapon, armor and accessory slots for each party member.

Each oculi has an elemental affinity, for example Ruby is Fire, and has a different effect depending on which slot it is equipped to. The same oculi might grant you an elemental attack, an elemental resistance, or a chance to dodge attacks while you're casting a spell, depending on which slot you equip it to.

Furthermore, oculi adds a crafting system to the game. Adding three smaller versions of the same oculi together creates a more potent version, while mixing together different oculi produces different results entirely.

Even after playing the game for a few hours, I still have a lot to do in my save file of CoL. But I'm already very pleased with this game. I'd say it's one of the better RPGs of recent years, and it's certainly ambitious for being a downloadable title.

Though the game is still apparently short, it is still surprisingly good, and makes a fantastic example of just what a good RPG can be. From story and presentation, to battles and gameplay, Child of Light is pretty much a modern masterpiece of role-playing goodness.

Ubisoft found an oculi in the rough with this game, and I look forward to playing through it soon.

~ Ovirew

Planning for the Year Ahead

In case you missed any of them and would like to review any of my other recent blogs (since I've been posting so many recently), here are some links:

My E3 Opinions

Recent Buys

A few minutes ago I took the liberty of making some new stacks, specifically to keep track of many of the games I have my eye on right now, following E3. There's an average of 10-12 games I'm looking at for each game system, and as always I'm still not entirely sure which games I will definitely buy.

In total, there's roughly 40-50 games I'm following now - that includes games that are out and games that are in development that I want to get. Narrowing that down might be difficult, but maybe it'll come more naturally than I'm thinking it will.

In reality I will probably only pursue a certain number of games for each system through year's end. I will likely pick up many of the 3DS games I'm interested in over the coming months. I will probably buy a couple of indie games for both the ONE and PS4, and there will likely only be a few big games that I get for those systems by 2016. I can kind of try to map it out:

3DS: It seems likely that during Summer I'll get Majora's Mask 3D and Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon. It's hard to say if there will be any other pickups between now and August, though Smash Bros. may win me over sooner rather than later. The lower cost of 3DS games versus console games, along with my tendency to play handheld games more frequently than console games, means my 3DS wishlist might not take many hits.

PS4: The unfortunate reality is that not many new PS4 games are announced for late 2014. Tearaway Unfolded could be tempting, as it comes along at a fairly sparse time in early September, and only costs $40. I like Hotline Miami enough that I may want to purchase the original game in full, since I only own it now due to being a PS Plus member. Dragon Quest Heroes, which comes out in mid-October, is something I've been debating about ever since I first heard of it - maybe I will give it a chance since I am a fan of the series.

ONE: August pretty much guarantees I will be buying the Rare Replay - 30 games for $30, a tremendous value with an assortment of great games. Halo 5 comes out mid-October, and I may just have to day-one that as well. There are several indie games I have my eye on for the system, but a lack of concrete release dates makes planning purchases difficult. PVZ2 will apparently come along soon, but I'm not sure that I have time for one version of the game, let alone two. Until Gamescom takes place, it is unclear which other games will be released by year's end.

Wii-U: Admittedly the case for the Wii-U continues to look pretty sparse. Affording games for 3 consoles is challenge enough. 4 is pushing it way too far. At that point, passing on certain games just kind of happens. If I were to get the Wii-U, my first priority would be to get some games that my wife could play with me. I am not going to think about this any further for now.

Adding the total value of just these games, comes out to somewhere in the neighborhood of $350. That's already a pretty hefty investment, but who can say how things will go for certain? To look at the immediate future, I'd say I expect to spend $120 or so on games through mid-August. We'll see how that works out.

Decisions, Decisions...

After finally getting through route 5 on Pokemon Y with an Abra and a Plusle in tow, I decided that would be a good stopping point with that game for a few days. Now I'm thinking of finally hopping back into Ocarina of Time 3D, to experience that game once again.

On the PS4, I think that decision's pretty easy, I should resume my Final Fantasy X save file I started up recently. Haven't been in an indie mood lately, though.

On the XBO I'd really like to jump back into Dead Rising 3.

I guess that sounds like a plan. Now we'll see if I stick to that...

~ Ovirew

E3 2015 Thoughts

This year E3 was interesting for me because I own game systems from all three major companies. While I still don't have the Wii-U, and I have no plans of ever getting the Vita again, there was almost certainly something to look forward to on all fronts. There's no real debating that it was a good E3 event, all-around.

Of course, as usual, some of the shows went better than others'. I have my own opinions about what was good and bad, and what I'm looking forward to for the next year in gaming. So here is a rundown of some of the things I found interesting from Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft's camps:

Nintendo

Prior to their showing, Nintendo made it clear that the NX, Nintendo's mobile plans and Zelda Wii-U would not be discussed. We may not hear about any of those things again until 2016. Disappointing, to be sure, especially because mention of any of those things could have cemented interest in Nintendo during E3 this year.

Nintendo started off their event by unveiling Star Fox Zero, which Shiguru Miyamoto had announced he was working on a while ago, and which will undoubtedly be something for Wii-U owners to look forward to. I'm not a big SF fan, but one feature I did find cool is that your Arwing can transform into a bipedal chicken-looking land unit. All of the ships in the game can transform into a land rover of some sort, it seems. The Wii-U gamepad is also used as a cockpit camera and for navigation.

The problem is that Star Fox Zero, at least going off of the E3 trailer, really doesn't look that good - even by Wii-U standards. The graphics look like they belong to a Gamecube game, or at the very least something from the Wii. Platinum Games surely could have made a better Star Fox game... But maybe by the time it comes out it will actually see improvements. The bigger issue is probably that Nintendo had few surprises to show throughout the event.

Earthbound Beginnings was announced prior to Nintendo's E3 event, and is a port of the original NES game, translated into English. I applaud Nintendo for bringing their Japan-only games stateside, though this was one of few actual surprises at the event.

Yoshi's Wooly World was one of the highlights of the show, mainly because of the unique yarn and cloth inspired world of the game, much like Kirby's Epic Yarn before it. The game went on to score an average 6 out of 10 here on GS. On that same token, it really doesn't seem like it does much new for the series aside from its art style.

Fire Emblem If was renamed to Fire Emblem Fates, and new footage of the Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem Wii-U game were shown. But I didn't feel like there was much new stuff shown to really merit their being present at the event, other than to promise more good games are coming soon.

Xenoblade Chronicles X was shown again as well. I think it actually received a release date for later this year. This is good and all, but again not much else was really shown and it wasn't a surprise.

Probably one of the most negative notes of the entire thing, in my personal opinion, was the Animal Crossing Wii-U card game thing. You go out and buy these cards (Amiibo dead yet?) and scan them on your gamepad... And play Mario Party with the Animal Crossing characters? Why? I really don't know. It seems lousy and nonsensical though. The new 3DS Animal Crossing game is probably going to be alright, though it seems very redundant.

Equally as bad in my opinion was Zelda: Triforce Heroes. In addition to being another lousy Four Swords-style Zelda game, it reuses resources from A Link Between Worlds, and is set in a 'fashion-savvy' land where Link can change into different outfits to gain different abilities - including a dress.

One good bit of Zelda news was that Hyrule Warriors is being ported to the 3DS... Though that really probably isn't great news for Wii-U owners who need exclusives.

Two really great 3DS surprises came from the event. The first of which was Metroid Prime Federation. A lot of Metroid fans were unhappy with the reveal, but personally I am looking forward to it. Little is known about the story, but you play as a federation bounty hunter with a suit just like Samus', and the game has a co-op mode as well as a multiplayer soccer-like game where you use your blasters to shoot a large ball into the other players' net. The game also employs a super-deformed art style - something I don't take issue with, but something that a lot of Metroid fans would.

The other pleasant surprise was Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. Mario & Luigi from that game series meet up with the Paper Mario versions of themselves, and team up with Paper Mario to perform various paper-themed attacks. Though I haven't given either of those series' enough attention, I think combining the two together was an unexpected stroke of genius. I may be interested in Paper Jam.

Probably the biggest thing at Nintendo's E3, again not a surprise but something that has been around since last E3, was Super Mario Maker. You can create your own Mario levels and use assets from Super Mario 1, 3, World and New, and mix and match them. You can have Mario flying around in a cloud shooting fireballs, you can have him wearing a spiny as a helmet, and you can make a totally impossible level if you'd like. The game was used to make the final challenge for the people who won the Nintendo Championship Contest at E3.

Thoughts: I don't want to call Nintendo's event disappointing, because for me there are quite a few games from the event that I am looking forward to. However, it simply was not a good E3 showing. Nintendo did little to inspire confidence in the troubled Wii-U, and in fact the best thing to look forward to on the system is Mario Maker... Which is essentially Nintendo giving you a tool and saying, "Make your own game."

The Big-N didn't have many surprises to show at E3, and those they did have were mostly aimed at the 3DS, or were already announced prior to the event. Nintendo also didn't have much in the way of big first-party games to show, certainly not anything with the reach of Zelda Wii-U.

At the end of the day, most of what Nintendo showed was games that they themselves are making, or are producing in partnership with other developers. And when you consider that, their showing was decent. Nintendo also has Zelda Wii-U in the works, as well as the NX and mobile games. So all things considered, there is still a lot coming down the pipeline from Nintendo.

Sony

Sony was the quietest of the bunch at E3 this year. I didn't watch their show, partly because I wasn't at home whenever it aired, and partly because after the fact I didn't see much reason to watch the entire thing. But Sony did unveil lots of interesting games, and had some surprises.

The biggest reveal of the whole conference was probably the Final Fantasy 7 remake. All we have to go on is a quickly-made, but still impressive trailer showing Cloud walking through Midgar with his buster sword on his back, but that was really all SquareEnix needed to really get peoples' attention. But let's not forget that this wasn't Sony, so much as it was SE.

SE also showed World of Final Fantasy, a game where you play as two twins going through an FF world and befriending monsters, and they can become chibi and ride upon the monsters or the monsters can become chibi and ride atop the twins. They showed Kingdom Hearts 3, which looks to end the series on a high note. They showed Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithfulness, which looks astonishing and, quite possibly, is the closest thing I'll have to look forward to a traditional JRPG for a while, turn-based goodness lacking. They also showed Nier 2, though only artwork for it, and it could be good though I've never played the first.... But it is connected to Drakengard.

Square Enix really did a lot for Sony's event.... And when you take that away, their show was somewhat lacking... But there were still plenty of other great announcements.

Shenmue 3, probably one of the most long-awaited games of the past decade, was announced by the series creator, surprisingly as a kickstarter project. Likely backed by Sony, the kickstarter was theorized to have helped show fan interest in the project, and ensure some extra content was made possible for the game. I have never played a Shenmue game before in my life, but I will say that I wouldn't mind doing so.

The other really big announcement of Sony's event, and one of the few that Sony really had something to do with, was The Last Guardian being shown and confirmed to be on the way for PS4. It's great that Sony finally made good on seeing this game through, but that doesn't detract from the fact that this is a game we've been waiting on for about 10 years - a game that lots of people bought a PS3 for, only to find that it kept going into development hell. This game's re-announcement, was really just long-overdue expected behavior.

Horizon Zero Dawn is being made by the Killzone developers and looks kind of decent, you play as a woman fighting robots with primitive weapons. Sony also showed more of Uncharted 4, which is worth mentioning. Street Fighter 5 is, of course, completely console exclusive.

For good measure, Sony is also making strides with its Vue TV device.

Thoughts: Sony had a good showing, but a lot of that is thanks to SquareEnix and a game that has been in development hell for a decade. Shenmue 3 being announced for kickstarter was a pretty unprecedented thing, and Horizon Zero Dawn does look like it could be an interesting new IP. The problem is that Sony didn't have a lot to show themselves, quite the opposite from Nintendo.

Sony needs to deliver on a lot of promises now. Creating hype is one thing, but following through is another entirely. A good example of this is No Man's Sky, a game which wowed crowds at last E3. In the game you can fly around to many proceedurally-generated worlds created by other players, and shoot at stuff in space. But little was really shown about what you do in the game, that makes it more interesting or even as interesting as a game like Minecraft. It is this lack of transparency that is hurting Sony in the long run.

That said, lots of great Sony games to look forward to. I didn't even mention Dragon Quest Heroes, Fat Princess Adventures, Hellblade or Tearaway Unfolded - any of which could also be decent.

Microsoft

The XBox team made an announcement ahead of E3 stating that several high-profile games would not be mentioned at E3, including Crackdown, Scalebound and Quantum Break. Also not mentioned was Phantom Dust, the progress of which is unknown at this point.

A lot of things were mentioned about Halo 5: Guardians, even right before E3. Locke and Chief are both playable and have their own teams of 3 comrades that follow them around as AI companions in the story. There was a HoloLens demo where holograms directed you to different waypoints. And then the biggest news of all was probably Warzone - big team multiplayer with a twist - you're also fighting against AI opponents! This frankenstein of a multiplayer mode will almost certainly be a welcomed thing.

A new IP was announced and a trailer was shown for Recore. It is the creation of the Metroid Prime team, and the creator of Mega Man, Keiji Inafune. Though no gameplay was shown, the premise is interesting already. You play as a girl who fixes up robots with blue 'cores' she finds, and they serve as her guardians and assistants whenever evil robots with red cores show up. The blue cores can be moved to different robot bodies. I am super-excited about this one.

Backwards compatibility was announced for 360 games. This extends to many downloadable games, and also DLC. I'm still foggy on the details, but I guess this means I will be able to play Toy Soldiers 1 and 2 again - possibly without paying another dime? Great news for people who want to play older games on their new console, I hope Microsoft continues to support this feature and make it work with every game, sans Kinect games. (It can't play them.)

Fable Legends, while lauded by the audience, still seems like a decent game to me. It is completely free anyways, so I don't see why people are whining!

Cuphead still looks great, and I think Microsoft intentionally kept the game from being released until now just so they could highlight their indie reel with the game. I also thought Ashen looked good, and would like to see more of that game in action.

Rare Replay was announced, and has 30 RARE games... For $30! Amongst the titles are all 3 Banjo-Kazooie games, Jet Force Gemini, both Perfect Darks, two Viva Pinata games, two versions of Battletoads, Grabbed by the Ghoulies, Conker's Bad Fur Day and Kameo: Elements of Power. It comes out later this Summer. And Rare is also making a new game called Sea of Thieves, which looks like a pirate MMO. ...Not really sure about that one...

Plants VS Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 was announced by EA. I felt like this announcement was sweet and sour - sweet because I like the first game, sour because it seems unnecessary and I'm not sure if I want to buy another one. I am kind of interested though. The game is likely multiplat, though.

Gears of War 4 was shown.... For fans of those games. Rise of the Tomb Raider, which is exclusive, was also shown. Forza 6 was also shown.

A new controller was shown that has changeable parts. It costs $150! I am not interested, but it's another hardware option for enthusiasts.

I felt like the Dark Souls 3 announcement made me kind of bitter. It's like there is a new one of these games every year now. Kind of over them.

The Hololens Minecraft demo was probably the biggest highlight of the event. It showed that you can play Minecraft in VR, on your wall. Then, you can load your minecraft world on a table, and move it around and zoom in and out of it while playing the game from the third-person perspective. HoloLens is probably going to change the world, and this really showed augmented reality being taken a step further than with the 3DS.

Thoughts: I honestly feel like Microsoft had the best overall E3, and hopefully I still feel that way when these games come out.

Halo 5 has gradually become more interesting with each year since its unveiling. And now Warzone makes possible CPU vs multiplayer battles.

I think Rare Replay shows Microsoft's value package of content for the year... And while I think it does little to show that Rare is still great, a point they should be striving to prove, at least it shows the majority of their best games in one place.

The backwards-compatibility announcement struck a clear blow against Sony, who has no real plans to make the PS4 backwards-compatible. It's true that any PS3 or Vita game I've already bought before that is made available on the PS4 is free to download, though, so Microsoft is only just catching up to Sony in some respects. But this really spells great things for the One, since the 360 was a very successful console with lots of memorable games.

Recore looks like a great new IP, and with the Metroid Prime team as well as the creator of Mega Man in tow, it is sure to be worth checking out.

HoloLens... Really just blew me away.

I felt like all of the bases were covered, for the most part. Was it the most amazing E3 ever? No, but it was very good. And I am excited about my XBox One again.

Final Thoughts

E3 2015 was big, and along with it came lots of games to look forward to. On my 3DS, PS4 and my XBO I have great games to look forward to, as well as the great games I already own. I am even still interested in the Wii-U, thanks to some existing and upcoming exclusives.

To be honest, I'm really not entirely sure where to go from that. For the time being, I think my focus is on collecting some of the 3DS games I want, but not even at a fast pace. I feel like Rare Replay and Halo 5 are going to be day-one pickups for me, and likely also Crackdown. Final Fantasy 7 and The Last Guardian are surefire day-one buys. I guess all that I really can do is get what seems most interesting first, and wait on the rest.

I don't mean to discount the Square-Enix, Bethesda, EA or Ubisoft shows... But I really didn't have time for all of that yet. As things stand, there are a lot of games fighting for my money. I have to use my head a bit.

Many indies will probably fall to the back-burner. Cuphead and Toy Soldiers 3 are two exceptions to this rule.

One thing is clear. Many of these games will probably fall by the wayside as others take up my attention.

~ Ovirew

New Purchases - 6-20-15

This past week I made a few new gaming purchases.

I managed to finally find a copy of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D for a fair price, and it arrived in the mail a few days ago.

Finding the game was a bit of a hassle, but I think it was worth the trouble. I remember owning it before, the time when I had my first 3DS, and it really was the highlight of that year for the handheld.

One thing I didn't notice so well the first time I owned the game, was just how impressive the re-master was. When you're away from a game for years and technology continues to improve, sometimes you forget the little things, like just how blocky a game used to be - or how dingy the lighting and textures were.

If there ever was a game that deserved praise for its excellent handling of game remastering - without changing too much of the original product - then Nintendo almost certainly brought home that award with OOT 3D.

Getting OOT 3D again really means a lot to me because it feels like it brings my 3DS collection full-circle, back to my first failed attempt with the handheld in 2011. It represents, to me at least, this new beginning with the New Nintendo 3DS. It's another chance to maybe actually beat Zelda OOT for the first time. And, it is also a great lead-in to Majora's Mask 3D, which I also plan on getting at some point soon.

I also finally caved in and bought the New 3DS charge cradle. I still feel like every 3DS should come with one of these - after they packed the launch 3DS with one, it has been strange to cope without one since.

I'd really forgotten how novel and efficient it is to just set your handheld into a charge cradle and then pick it up and go whenever you want to play. There's no cords to unplug and wrap up, and it gives my 3DS a stand of sorts, where I know it will always be whenever it charges.

It's maddening enough that Nintendo can't even pack in a handheld's charger, let alone the charge cradle these days. Best not to worry that company with too many other things...

Anyway, I think it was a surprisingly practical pickup.

But before all of those purchases, I made good on buying a new copy of Pokémon Y.

So far, this is what I've spent most of my time playing lately. It's been nice to jump back into Gen 6 after a year away from it, and relive some of those Kalos memories.

Pokémon Y is another game I owned but didn't get the chance to complete. It's funny, I was in the Shadow Dungeon on Zelda and on the final gym leader of Pokémon Y, before I gave up on those two games the first times around.

I must have restarted Y about 4 times since I repurchased it the other day, but I think I've finally settled in with my current save file. Just got Squirtle again, like old times!

I also picked up this bad-boy, the Midnight Forces Xbox One controller. It was entirely on a whim. I walked into the Microsoft Store minutes before closing time, and an associate was chatting with us. I felt like I had to buy something since I was there wasting their time, and then I spotted it... And I don't really regret the decision.

Way I see it is, I needed a second controller. I like blue. And now, I can maybe play some of those co-op games I have with my wife, if she ever wants to.

I'll probably want to buy a new charge kit at some point, but I really don't mind using batteries with these things. I have a bunch to use, anyways.

I don't really have enough time to talk about it, and I won't really get into it too much, but E3 2015 also happened this past week.

Maybe I'm in the minority, but I still think that Microsoft had the best showing of the bunch. Like I still don't see how other people disagree with that, since I feel like Microsoft had a very well-rounded E3 and seemed to hit like every sort of checkmark on the list of must-haves for an amazing E3.

I will have to talk about it more next time. I also think some great games were announced for Nintendo and Sony systems, but I think Nintendo suffered from a lack of big surprises and third-party support, and I think Sony didn't have a lot of first-party stuff to show. Microsoft still has more planned for Gamescom, and I'm looking forward to it.

~ Ovirew

Catching Up - 6/13/15

This is really just going to be a quick blog entry, to bring everything up to speed.

So the wedding and honeymoon went well, and things have been back to normal for the past few days. Everything went by really fast, and things didn't necessarily go how I'd imagined they would, but it all worked out fine. Things don't feel like they've really slowed down though, life seems as busy as ever. This coming week I return to school, for starters.

I guess the main thing I'm looking forward to this week is E3. I'll probably make more blogs between now and the end of next week.

I did not have as much time to work on this blog entry as I'd figured I would, so I will end this for now. At least I have material for my next blog!

~ Ovirew