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    Mar 5th, 2008 at 22:11:38     -    Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn (Wii)

    GAMEPLAY

    I played on for another hour and a half expecting more but there isn't anything. It's totally possible that this game is nothing more than tactics and combat but I'm really surprised there isn't anything more than fighting and cut-scenes so far. Everything is getting old fast at this rate. I'm losing a lot to random circumstances and having to redo battles 2-4 times before either winning or getting tired of it and coming back later.

    The characters are very shallow and once in a rare while you can find a line that was written in Engrish. The storyline is all obvious and has no redeeming value to it. The scripted conversations spoken by characters during combat makes no sense usually and consists of little more than "I'm glad you're alive" and "Me too!".

    Combat is horribly rigged and the system doesn't allow for dead characters to be revived. This wouldn't be so much of an issue if they computer didn't intentionally gang up a (gameplay wise) unfair number of enemies against them. While they do usually make up for their weakness, they also don't survive a round of combat and thus are noted as useless. Seeing as how the core of this game is nothing but combat, you would think that it would work better.

    DESIGN

    The game has a few odd design traits that make it unique, but not all of them are necessarily good. First off is the way weapons break. Every weapon in the game, no matter how powerful, can only be used a limited number of times. This wouldn't be an issue and is often found in games like this except that the items cannot be repaired and often times vendors don't carry up-to-date weapons, leaving your characters with sub-par weaponry and unavoidable disadvantages. If that wasn't enough, the cost to purchase customizable weapons is insane based on the minor advantages they grant.

    Because of how the AI is built, tactics are of the utmost importance in this game. Many times I found myself trying to predict the computers next move (not really hard by any standards) and then coming up with complex counter attack measures. This seems to have been created by the computers obsession with attacking weaker allies.

    The game introduces extraordinarily tough characters into your team quite often. Normally I wouldn't gripe about this, especially since they're on par or better than the enemies thrown at you. The problem is that this leads to a high bias against characters you've started with. Not only did they start weak, but they tend to remain just behind the curve a majority of the time, making them liabilities on the battlefield.

    The things I have learned even before finishing this game is amazing and unfortunately they are mostly things that I will remember to avoid for the duration of my game production career. The items on this list include the introduction of powerful characters to the players team, the need for an uncomplicated battle system unless the game is designed for it's complexity, to never use items that break which can't be repaired, and that no game is good enough to be comprised of pure combat.

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    Mar 4th, 2008 at 03:21:34     -    Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn (Wii)

    SUMMARY

    In Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, you play as the characters of a raiding party known as the Radiant Dawn. After your country is destroyed by a war and its occupants thrown into work camps by the occupying army, a group of young adults attempts to free their country from the tyrannical grips of their oppressors. The object of the game is to win fights, upgrade your gear, and help save your country from its current fate.

    GAMEPLAY

    So far the game has been fairly straightforwards in orienting me to the combat system but not much else. Already an hour and a half into the game and, while I am playing on a difficulty level not recommended to people that have not played the series before, I've encountered a few fights that have proven very touchy. For instance, during the first four fights you cannot have any characters die or you lose the game. One character is a great magic user but weak physically (as is the usual stereotype) and many times she'll die from the first hit so I have to take many seemingly unnecessary tactics that keep her far from harm. The problem with this is that in order to get more powerful she needs to fight.

    The customization is fairly unique and allows many different forms of control schemes. The gameplay is also very interchangeable and the game can look vastly different during combat depending on the options you choose.

    The way in which no beginning tutorials is both a blessing and a curse. While it does save returning players the time of meaningless training, it thrusts new players into a game they are very unfamiliar with. Luckily, they have a number of demonstrations that can be accessed in-game (during combat even) that are very helpful and informative. The way in which they are sorted by Chapter is nice as well. Certain demonstrations aren't necessary to watch early on and can be passed and spread out over the duration of the game.

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    Feb 19th, 2008 at 13:55:23     -    Wii Sports (Wii)

    GAMEPLAY

    I played with more people this time and had a bit more fun than before. The baseball is just as maddening but both Tennis and Golf were significantly more fun with multiple people. The competition between players brought a few of the sports more life than they previously had.

    The game flowed much like last time as we flipped through from sport to sport. While they were fun, many sports were good for three to four plays before becoming boring.

    DESIGN

    The game has a few things that make it easily playable but not a lasting game. First off is the amazing controls. It's obvious that this game is meant to teach new Wii players how the Wiimote works. Because of this, they have spent a lot of time making it easy to control and forgiving at the same time. Many times I found myself marveling at how well the controls were picked up by the Wii.

    To keep the game interesting, Nintendo has developed a Skill system that slowly turns up the difficulty as your skill in the game increases. If it seems like they've made it too hard they will decrease your skill and the difficulty until you can easily play again and begin regaining skill.

    The levels aren't varied at all which heavily contributes to the fast game exhaustion. Many players who already have experience in this game will pass on the opportunity to play again.

    The game provides a few training levels which are fun in nature and allow the player to deviate from the normal rules of the sports as well as practice the movements that will help them later in the game.

    While not an amazing game, Wii Sports is definitely a good intro to the console and has some great aspects that make it worthwhile to play.

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    Feb 17th, 2008 at 04:23:23     -    Wii Sports (Wii)

    SUMMARY
    Wiisports is a "game" that allows you to play tennis, baseball, bowling, boxing, and golf using the Wiimote. It's the first game of its kind to use the Wiimote in such an interactive way. Sadly, that's all there seems to be.

    GAMEPLAY

    This game is simple in how it was designed. It's only purpose is to really acquaint the player with the Wiimote and Nunchuck. As the game that comes bundled with any retail purchased Wii, I wasn't really expecting much more than that and so far it seems really basic and forgiving. I am thinking the skill system will kick in soon and begin to present me with challenges now that I know what's going on.

    The game has a purpose. The playable characters are the Mii's you can create and there is absolutely no narrative or storyline to follow. It's purely an exercise in how the Wiimote works.

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    CptnWaffles's GameLogs
    CptnWaffles has been with GameLog for 14 years, 5 months, and 23 days
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    Entries written to date: 11
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    1Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn (Wii)Playing
    2No More Heroes (Wii)Finished playing
    3Resident Evil 4 (GC)Stopped playing - Got frustrated
    4Super Mario Galaxy (Wii)Stopped playing - Got Bored
    5Wii Sports (Wii)Finished playing

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