FFXV WHY?!?

Fellow Vidjagamers,

I haven’t played a Final Fantasy game in a long time, unless you count the mmo Final Fantasy XIV and even that was a few years back. Now I’m not the biggest Final Fantasy fanboy, the best memories I have from the series come from the American Super Nintendo version of Final Fantasy III. But I was still pretty hype for this game, all the trailers made it look pretty amazing, and I really liked the premise of playing as the main character and having your entourage follow along for the journey.

Within the first few hours of playing this game, I fell in love. In my mind, I was already touting it as game of the year. The world and setting were fantastic, I was having fun just running around the countryside exploring the landscape. The combat was solid, and it didn’t feel like a chore. The systems and mechanics felt deep and complex. Even the beginning of the story was keeping me interested. Everything was great, until I hit Chapter 9…

As soon as you finish Chapter 9, the gameplay becomes completely linear. The landscapes and setting become dull and repetitive. The combat becomes non-existent for the most part and at one point you are stripped of all your weapons forced to just run from every encounter. And the story just took a complete nose dive… It felt like they had written a whole book and because of deadlines they were forced to just rip out entire sections and pages here and there. This game quickly went from Game of the Year for me to, I don’t think I even want to finish this game.

But I still finished it, I actually completed 100% of the achievements with a play time of 78 hours. The good news is, is that when you do finish the story, you are able to basically go back in time to the open world setting and finish up all the side quests and hunts that you didn’t finish before you progressed past Chapter 9. This game is brimming with extra content too, there’s something like 200 side quests to complete, monster hunts to battle monsters across the map, and dungeons to explore. After you beat the game, you can do the end game dungeons which are higher level and will really challenge you. There’s even a 100 floor dungeons that completely caught me off guard and I spent an entire afternoon trying to complete. It was an act of attrition, and one I wasn’t going to back down from. There’s plenty of secrets to be found as well, including a dungeon that’s devoid of any enemies and is just series of ingenious jumping puzzles that will really test you.

Overall, I’d still recommend this game to people, but I’d give them a warning to just plow through the story so that they can enjoy the open world gameplay.

Splatoon: Builds

Fellow Vidgamers,

Splatoon TitleHere is a post where I am going to talk about my opinion on the ‘best’ build, or at least the one that fits my play style the best and the gear that corresponds with it. First there are some things to know about the gear in Splatoon.

  • Every day at 12AM (I believe I read that it was EST), the 6 pieces of gear in the shops rotates, this doesn’t mean all of it will rotate out, but a majority of it will update.
  • Each piece of gear has one main ability, and up to 3 sub abilities. It takes 3 sub abilities of the same type to have the same effect as one main ability perk. The perks can stack, but there are diminishing returns on them. It is recommended to have 3 different main abilities and 3 sets of different sub abilities to get the most out of your perks.
  • The stores aren’t the only places to get gear. You can order gear from Spyke, the blue haired guy in the top right of the plaza map. All you have to do is inspect another player in the plaza and press ‘X’ to order one of their pieces of gear. This will take a day for the order to come through and Spyke will charge you way more than if you found it in the store, but this allows you to buy exactly what you want.
  • The branding on clothes isn’t just an abstract thing either. Each brand has it’s own percentage chance to roll certain sub abilities. I found a very helpful faq for reading up on abilities and brands on GameFaqs.
  • You can re-roll and add sub slots to your gear at level 20 by visiting Spyke and investing 30,000 per slot.

The first thing to my Splatoon playstyle is my mantra: “Always Be Inking“. I prefer to always be covering the map in ink, even in ranked where the objective only requires you to cover a small portion of the map. The benefits to covering the map are tremendous. You get a move speed bonus while moving through your ink as a squid, allowing you to traverse the map faster. You build up your super with the ink you put down onto uncovered and enemy covered territory. Supers will help turn the tide of battle in your favor. You take more damage when you are standing on enemy ink, so it’s important to always be on your own ink.

Now onto my preferred perk build. The six perks that I prefer are:

  • Ink Saver (Main)
  • Ink Saver (Sub)
  • Ink Recovery Up
  • Swim Speed Up
  • Special Charge Up
  • Ink Resistance Up (Which is exclusive to shoes)

Always Be Inking gifAll of these things let me ‘Always Be Inking‘. Ink Saver (Main) and (Sub) reduce the cost of ink that it takes to use your primary and sub weapons. Ink Recovery Up makes it so that every time you turn into a squid in your own ink, you are refilling your ink canister that much faster. Swim Speed Up helps you to quickly traverse the map to be covering more of the map as quickly as possible. Special Charge Up is fantastic because your special abilities help to turn the tide of battle and the more of them per game the better. Finally, what may be the best ability in the game, Ink Resistance Up. This ability has saved me more times than I can count. Effectively it allows you to swim through enemy ink for a short time as well as take less damage while standing on enemy ink. This ability is key for hasty retreats when you are in enemy territory.

With that being said, I have compiled a list of all the gear that qualifies for these six perks.

Gear Name Type Brand Main Ability Brand 5x Ability
Camo Mesh Head Fire Fin Swim Speed Ink Saver (Sub)
Jungle Hat Head Fire Fin Ink Saver (Main) Ink Saver (Sub)
Fake Contacts Head Tentatek Special Charge Up Ink Recovery Up
Fish Fry Visor Head Fire Fin Special Charge Up Ink Saver (Sub)
Red Vector Tee Chest Takoroka Ink Saver (Main) Special Saver Up
Rainy Day Tee Chest Krak-On Ink Saver (Main) Swim Speed Up
Choco Layered LS Chest Takoroka Ink Saver (Sub) Special Charge Up
Baseball Jersey Chest Fire Fin Special Charge Up Ink Saver (Sub)
Sunny Day Tee Chest Krak-On Special Charge Up Swim Speed Up
Neon Sea Slugs Shoes Tentatek Ink Resistance Ink Recovery
Red High Tops Shoes Krak-On Ink Resistance Swim Speed Up

Special mentions to the unique chest perk Stealth Squid and the unique shoes perk Stealth Jump. It just doesn’t fit my current mind set, but I know a lot of people like to use them (especially ninjas).

Red Vector Tee imageWith that being said, I found a ensemble of gear that matched my requirements. By wearing the head piece ‘Camo Mesh‘, the chest piece ‘Red Vector Tee‘, and the shoes ‘Neon Sea Slugs‘; I managed to get the six perks that I wanted! The best part is that I already owned two of them and the third I ordered from Spyke with a little help from my good friend Andrew.

If anybody has any other information that they feel should be included here, or just some opinions about my build, feel free to leave a comment below.

 

Splatoon: Nintendo’s Shooter

Fellow Vidjagamers,

Splatoon Title

I have finally returned from my year long expedition to the Himalaya’s where I found my inner peace while meditating with the monks. I thought I could keep up this new me, but unfortunately I have found this new game from Nintendo called ‘Splatoon’. Now I find myself bad mouthing people’s mothers, frequently yelling “GET REKT” at my television, and going Hulk mode when I lose a ranked match online.

Squid/Kid gifSplatoon is a first party Nintendo game in the third person shooter genre. Only you’re not shooting bullets, but ink instead. You are literally splatting other children with ink to achieve kills. I don’t really know if I can call the characters children either, because you can transform into a squid at any time to swim through the ink that you create. It’s a strange concept, but it works on so many levels and it just feels soooo right. I’m a big fan of shooters, and the mechanics in this game feel really tight, rivaling that of Destiny which is praised for it’s mechanics/controls.

Multiplayer matches are 4v4 and right now the most common game mode is one where you cover the map in paint, and whoever has more of the map covered after 3 minutes is declared the winner. There is also a ranked mode where instead of the objective being to cover the whole map, you are now vying for control of a small area that you have to take control of and hold until your side’s counter reaches zero. There are a handful of maps to play on right now and more are being added as free dlc weekly. The strange thing is though, that these maps are on rotation, so you can only play 2 of them at any given time until the next rotation comes through. Which is fine, because the maps are well balanced and it feels really good when you learn every nook and cranny of the map and are able to exploit it.

Splatoon PaintbrushNow we come to one of the best parts of the game for me. There is a perk system which rivals that of the Call of Duty franchise and these perks are embedded into the clothing system in the game. You can equip your character with clothes that unlock perks; such as faster run speed, faster squid swim speed, longer distance grenade throws, etc… Each piece of clothing contains one main perk and can have up to 3 sub perks. This allows for a wide assortment of builds for your character. There’s also dozens of weapons to unlock. You have your standard super soaker style paint guns, but then you also have paintbrushes, paint rollers, an ink bazooka, sniper rifles that shoot paint, and that’s just a small sample of them. Each weapon has it’s own ‘kit’, which consists of the weapon, it’s sub weapon (think grenades and special ordinances), and a super basically, which can be things such as calling down an ink strike onto the map or turning into a Kraken to run over your enemies.

Splatoon has been eating up a lot of my free time and I’m very excited to keep playing it. For any of you who own a Nintendo Wii U and a copy of Splatoon, feel free to add my Nintendo ID (brudi07) and hit me up to play a few games if I’m online.

Thanks for reading!

The Truth About Steam Sales

Fellow Vidjagamers,

Dorkly has posted a great comic explaining the truth about Steam sales. Thinking about Steam sales has never hit home quite the way that this did. I have so many Steam games and I have probably only played 20% of them, while they others are basically collectibles for me. Does anyone else have this problem with Steam sales?

The Truth About Steam Sales

THREES!

Fellow Vidjagamers,

I have recently become addicted to a new mobile game called THREES. THREES seems like a simple puzzle game at first. You have a 4×4 board, and every turn you can swipe in one of 4 directions. The object of the game is to combine tiles into bigger tiles. You start by combining ‘1’ and ‘2’ tiles into ‘3’. From there you have to double each tile, so combining ‘3’ and ‘3’ make ‘6’, ‘6’ and ‘6’ make ’12’, etc… Everytime you swipe, a new tile is introduced to the board coming in from the direction that you swiped from. The game ends when the board fills up and you are no longer able to combine any more tiles together. At this point the game ends and you are awarded points based on the numbers left on the board.

 

One of the most enjoyable aspects of the game is trying to figure out how to combine tiles into the higher tile combinations. It’s fairly easy to get to ’48’ or ’96’, but it took me a few games before I was building up to ‘192’ tiles. My current highest tile is ‘384’. Once you do build up to a tile though it seems easier and easier for you to continuously get back to that same tile in your next game.

The THREES website is a very nice looking and minimalistic site. You can find the downloads to the android and iOS versions of the game there. The price tag on the game is $1.99, but it is incredibly worth it! I have already spent at least 8+ hours on the game and currently have a high score of 9,684. If you manage to beat this score, I’d love for you to post to the comments with your own high score!

Diablo 3 Patch 2.0.1

Fellow Vidjagamers,

Diablo 3 Patch 2.0.1 is out and with it come a lot of big changes for Diablo 3. (I have linked the patch notes for those of you who want to read about everything that has changed.) The most notable changes are Loot 2.0 and Paragon levels. With Loot 2.0, all loot that drops for your character is more specifically tailored to your characters stats. This means that you will no longer have to comb the auction house for gear that fits your character. Seeing as how the auction house is going away soon, this makes sense. Paragon levels are now unlimited, and now instead of getting static attribute points with every level you instead get to choose how you want to distribute those points. This allows for a bit more customization to builds. Also, paragon levels are now global, meaning that any paragon levels you gain for one character will be available for all of your 60+ characters.

Reaper of SoulsI have been enjoying my time with the new changes to Diablo and it only makes me even more excited for the new expansion that is coming out on March 25th “Reaper of Souls“. So far I haven’t made much progress in the loot department. I have just been farming the new difficulty Torment 1 as it takes too long for me to kill mobs in Torment 2 so far. I have had a few legendaries drop and even a legendary blacksmith plan, but no upgrades so far. Not that upgrades really matter that much at this point, once the expansion releases everyone will be replacing their level 60 gear with level 70 gear. My focus right now is just to gain as many paragon levels as possible until the expansion launches.

If you would like to take a look at my current wizard build and gear you can find it here. I highly recommend hopping back into Diablo with the new expansion, and if you never played before it’s the perfect time to start since all of the changes they have made have drastically increased the playability of the game.

For the Masochistic: Flappy Bird

Fellow Vidjagamers,

I think I may have inadvertently stumbled upon the hardest game ever created. I thought that Dark Souls was hard, but this game puts even Dark Souls to shame. The game that I am talking about is a mobile game called Flappy Bird. The premise is simple, tap the screen to make a bird fly and navigate through a series of pipes for as long as you can.

The only problem is, is that it’s almost impossible to even score into the double digits. It took me at least a dozen attempts before I managed to hit 10. After an hour or so of playing I managed to get to 25 and I felt like that was a huge accomplishment! I have heard of a few people who have managed to make it into triple digits and I have no idea how they were able to do that.

This game is so simple, and I’m not really sure how it holds my attention. I think it has something to do with human beings having the mentality of ‘just one more game’. The games are so short and simple to start over that it’s harder for you to stop playing then it is to just play ‘one more game’. That and the feeling that every time you start a new game you could beat your old high score and have bragging rights to those in your friend group who are also masochistic enough to play this game.

Here’s the link for Android users.

And for those iOS users.

Taking A Break

Fellow Vidjagamers,

I have recently hit a slump with my gaming. I have not been playing vidjagames for the past few months. I have tried, but it just hasn’t been the same. I’m pretty sure that I need to get back to my old mental health before I will be able to play video games like I used to.

For me playing video games is about enjoying time with friends online or losing myself in a fantasy world by myself. But when you have other things on your mind, it’s hard to really enjoy those things because in the back of your head you are still thinking about what has been bothering you. This is what I have been dealing with. It’s hard for me to do what I love when I’m not at the top of my game mentally. Does anyone else have this problem, or do some of you cope with your problems through gaming?

I’m sorry that I haven’t had any relevant content to contribute to this site for the past few months. I’m slowly getting back to my old self. I’ve started to get myself back into my old hobby of vidjagaming. Hopefully I’ll be making posts more often, and with more interesting content to read other than me talking about my sad self.

Guess Who’s Back

Fellow Vidjagamers,

The Humble Store

Aside from that terrible title referencing an Eminem song (who has recently released a new album) you may have noticed that I have really been slacking in my editorial duties. I apologize. I was locked away in a Mexican prison for things that I can’t discuss on this site for legal reasons. What I can tell you though is that ‘The Humble Store’ has finally released and you can find some great game sales on there. I highly recommend checking it out as there are some top notch games on there for dirt cheap.

Hopefully I will be able to post more often now that I’m back in the country and out of that filthy Mexican jail cell.

Next Xbox’s Press Conference

Fellow Vidjagamers,

Microsoft will be having a press conference today to go over all of the new features with the next Xbox. You can watch the live event here http://www.xbox.com/en-US/hub/reveal.

Today Microsoft will be confirming the actual name of the next xbox (will it be the 720 or the Durango which is what it was called during development). We will also find out if you will always have to be connected to the internet to play games, this has been a hot topic over the last few months. One Microsoft employee was actually fired over this as he posted this information and then went on to criticize people about it.