Sunday, October 6, 2013

Dragons, Guns and Titans, oh my!

Man, it's been a busy week! Playstation+ gave away Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen for free, so I got that last weekend. It's ridiculously good. Imagine Skyrim, Dark Souls and Shadow of the Colossus fused together into one being. BAM. You got Dragon's Dogma!

The world looks really great and it's so detailed! There's tons of foliage around, be it grass, bushes, trees, rocks or what you thought was rocks, only to wake up and prove to be a Golem. This is where the Shadow of the Colossus part comes up. Instead of just hacking away at enemies' ankles, you can climb up their bodies and hit various bodyparts for various effects! Hit a Griffin or a Drake that's flying on their wings, and they'll come tumbling down. Hit a Cyclops on his weapon-hand, and he'll drop his weapon. It's basic stuff, but it helps make the combat so satisfying. And the only way to defeat a Golem? Destroy the spots imbued with magic, allowing him to move! Seriously, this game has got a lot of different enemies, from the common goblin, to harpies, griffins, chimeras, drakes and more. (I still haven't completed the game, it's really big, so there might be more that I don't know of as well).
Hit the weakspots for massive damage!
A Chimera's size, compared to a human.
Also related to gaming is the fact that the Battlefield 4 Open Beta is out for everyone to join. Me and a good amount of my buddies from Hardcore Gaming Community have been going at it for hours on end. Not having played Battlefield 3 on PC, I don't really have much of comparison. One thing I can say though is that the action is a lot more fast-paced and frantic on PC then Battlefield 3 is on PS3, and it's still a LOT of fun.

These last couple of days I've spent a lot of time watching what everyone else has been watching, Shingeki no Kyojin, or Attack on Titan as it's called in English. I deliberately waited for this to finish airing before I started watching, because from all the good things I had heard I knew it was gonna drag a hold of me and not let go. Sure enough, that's exactly what happened. I'm usually slow with watching series, so when I completed the entire 25 episodes in a week (and one of my work-weeks as well), I surprised myself. Something Shingeki no Kyojin does really, really well, is the artstyle, and the eyes of the characters. There's quite an amount of close-up shots of the characters eyes when something (usually particularly gruesome) happens.
Holy crap, these gas prices!
Another thing this series does really well is the characters. All of them are really memorable, have their own charms and quirks. My favourite character is most likely Sasha Blouse, just because of the amazing first impression she gave. Everyone else is standing at attention. Sasha? She's eating!

Sasha "Potato Girl" Blouse, best character.
Of course, if you eat when you're supposed to stand at attention you stand out like a sore thumb, so the Drill Sergeant notices her and asks what she's doing. She responds by saying that she's eating a potato, then attempts to break the potato in half (instead snapping it into a piece on 1/3 and another on 2/3). She then says she is willing to share half of the potato with the Drill Sergeant! The only thing that makes the scene even better is that the voice actress for Sasha also did the voice for Kaere/Kaede Kimura in Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei and Ruka "Rukako" Urushibara from Stein's;Gate.
Kaere/Kaede Kimura
Ruka Urushibara

The only negative things I can think of when it comes to Shingeki no Kyojin is that almost every episode had a 3-4 minute long "Previously on..." part, and it ends on a cliffhanger. This might just be something I didn't like, because I ended up watching all of it almost back-to-back, and not once a week like everyone else. I'm happy I ended up waiting, because those cliffhangers would have driven me nuts.

Final Verdict: 9/10
Pros:                                                                                  Cons:
- Great and immersive story                                                - Repeating previous episodes
- Amazing artstyle                                                               - Cliffhanger Ending
- LOTS of very likeable characters
- Great music (I'm still humming the second opening)
- Very smooth action scenes

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