“Remember when the platform was sliding into the firepit, and I was all “Goodbye!” and you were like “NO WAY” and then I was all “We pretended we were going to murder you, Happy New Year!“?
That was great.”
For everybody who is interested (I surely am): Mirror Moon recently released the third (and presumable) last English patch for the Fate/stay night computer game, including the Heaven’s Feel scenario and thus offering a translation for the whole game now. I said it before and can only say so again:
Thank you! Very, very much!
With the said much time at hand I’m also finally able to play some games I always somehow wanted to play but never had the moment where I was just sitting before my computer wondering what to do now and coincidentally looking at the game box I bought some time ago and thinking that this finally might be the time to finally play that thing that I spend good money on after all. However, this wasn’t the case with Dreamfall … but it was the case with The Longest Journey, which is the predecessor of Dreamfall and which, in fact, I only bought because I heard so much good about Dreamfall. And, to finally make a point, I finished Dreamfall this week and I must (gladly) agree that it is surely a great game worth playing, especially because of its absorbing story.
But I can’t help but wonder if this story is so well written as they say as well, because in the end this game goes pretty much Neon Genesis Evangelion on its players and leaves lots of questions unanswered and lots of situations unresolved. This might be intentional to let the player/viewer leave space for speculation and to fill the holes left at their liking, but it can also be a rather cheap way of avoiding the fact that ones own story just got too big and no good conclusion could be found in the end. Independent from this it could also be because of funds running out, which is at least true for NGE, but looking at everything that followed the original series I believe nobody really has any answers to give and I don’t think that anybody really wants any answers anymore. Well, anyway, from my point of view it is rather easy to build up an epic story, finishing it in a satisfying way certainly isn’t. And therefore, this is the main point at which good storytelling should be judged.
Having said the above, I’d like to once again confirm that, like NGE, Dreamfall is a great experience. It’s just that it leaves such a heavy feeling of incompleteness that even after a few days I still catch myself nearly starting the game to play on only to realise that there is no more to play. But, at least, there seems to be a good chance for a sequel that hopefully will finish the story satisfyingly in the end. So, everybody who likes story-driven adventures should give Dreamfall a try as well as its predecessor, The Longest Journey, but please take this last warning:
Just don’t finish this game at the end of an already bad day!
The current anime summer season is rather slow for me. There are just some few shows I’m following at the moment and practically none especially enthusiastic, but this gave and still gives me enough free time to finally play through the Tsukihime franchise I could collect over the past one and a half year (later was’nt an easy task for sure if one can’t/don’t want to spend too much money on this). In the end I got Tsukihime, Tsukihime Plus-Disk, Kagetsu Tohya and Melty Blood ReAct, which hopefully are all Tsukihime games one can collect as for today (at least these are the ones I’ve found English patches for, many thanks to MirrorMoon and Beast’s Lair by the way).
So far I’m through the first three games and I’m sure impressed by them. Each arc is touching on its own, but the later ones about the Tohno family are really great. This lets me understand now why so many people were rather disappointed about the anime that followed mostly Arcueids arc (but with the practical non-existence of the “main” heroine Arcueid in the later arcs there was not so much choice for the producers I guess). Of course, being an eroge, each heroine falls for the protagonist and finds a way to get laid, but that’s just a small cliché price to pay, doesn’t take very much time within whole story and with the patches comes the nice option to turn this sexual content off if desired. Finally, after the mostly serious Tsukihime the parodic Plus-Disk, the half-parodic Kagetsu Tohya and the translators (in some easter-eggs) twist a lot with the tragedy-loaded characters which is really a lot of fun to read and watch.
For the obligatory rating, I’d said Hisui > Ciel > Arcueid > Kohaku > Akiha, whereat Ciel scored many points later in the parodic games through her constantly breaking of the fourth wall whining about the popularity polls she lost and how the budget for her got cut short because nobody would care.
So, with Melty Blood being the last game to play now and also being a fighting game I’ll finally have a chance to prove my mad fighting skillz again. I remember myself to be pretty good at playing Mortal Kombat 4, those were the days…
…okay, maybe I wasn’t even decent, but at least I had made my own soundtrack CD to which losing didn’t felt that, uh, humiliating.
Finished the Utawarerumono game last night. The end of the story is still quite messed up, the tactical component was pretty easy and the hentai scenes were forced into the story and superfluous, … but the game was sure a heck lot of fun. With having watched the anime the story (sadly) didn’t hold any surprises for me, but because of the time gap of a few years between I’ve forgotten many of the minor details already which made going through the whole story again still enjoyable. Some of the characters made also a slightly different impression on me this time, especially Kuuya didn’t seem as shilly-shally as in the anime (although she still was). And, of course, “seeing” them all again was really great.
In defence of the tactical component I’ll have to admit that I’ve only played the normal mode so far and I’m sure that the hard modes (1 to 5) should be more challenging. Only problem is that there won’t be any real extra award for playing those, which doesn’t boost my moral to play through all of them very much. Maybe they should have put some extra story into those harder modes, maybe spread the hentai scenes (which can be considered as bonus I guess) over them. And while we are at the hentai stuff, I think it didn’t really rose the enjoyment of the game. They felt mostly forced and rather unfitting. Of course I knew that they would appear at some point in the game, but they could have been better embedded into the story and it would have been really nice to get a choice to go this far with certain girl or not. I’m sure I would have watched most of them anyway, if only for curiosity, but then at least it would have been my (in-game) choice to do so. I guess the playstation version does a better job with having them deleted after all. The story component altogether could have used some real possibility of choices, but maybe I’m demanding a bit much here, after all they had to finish the game in some reasonable time.
So, if you like tactical role-playing games like Fire Emblem and also do like animes (should be a given I guess) then try to get your filthy hands on a (legal!) copy of the PC-version of the Utawarerumono game, download the english-translation patch from the wonderful persons of mirror moon (if not able to read Japanese at least) and have a lot of fun.
And, while speaking about mirror moon, I guess it’s more than worthy to mention that the translation of the second Fate/stay night route, Unlimited Blade Works, is finally completed! Get the new patch while it’s still hot (and possibly, but hopefully not at all, a little bit bugged).
Yep, I’ve also been caught by the addiction of Audiosurf, thus wasting even more of my precious time on games. At least this way my old eurodance mp3s are of some use again. Haven’t found any anime themes to be of especially good playability, but the Pirates of the Caribbean Soundtrack is pretty nice for this game and Talking Head’s “Road to Nowhere” has some funny effects. But my best score of over 100.000 points so far was with Chris Hülsbeck’s Katakis theme.
What a silly world…
As of lately I’m obviously rather sleazy about this blog of mine. Reasons are manifold, beside the usual real life influence and my general laziness there are various TV series and some computer games which absorb most the spare time I’ve left at the moment. Most prominent series would be Battlestar Galactica which I’ve stalled for a too long time as I’ve realized now and for the computer games Team Fortress 2 and my rediscovery of the joys of Master of Orion 2 and Princess Maker 2 should be blamed the most. To cut this short, I’m watching a lot less anime as I’m used to these days and I have even less to blog about them. All I can think of momentary is that Shigofumi and Spice & Wolf are still interesting, ARIA is still beautiful, Okawari still isn’t as funny as the first season, True Tears is still a good harem show, Zoku Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei is still hilarious, Il Teatrino still doesn’t reach it’s precursor while being entertaining for itself and H2O still kind of sucks. None of this could provide a even half-decent basis for a post and the news of the release of an Utawarerumono translation patch didn’t raise my hope for much available anime- and blogging-time in the near future. Thus and because I wanted to show some sign of life again after some time I’ve decided to post this week seven of the latest additions to my wallpaper-list. This should be quite easy for me and I’ll try to put up some text for each wallpaper, but don’t expect too much. At least you’ll have some eye candy and I’ll have an eased mind again.
And because writing that above already took me long enough I’ll start with a wallpaper to which everything necessary is already said so many times.
The world of ARIA IS just beautiful after all and so is this wallpaper.