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    Feb 9th, 2008 at 01:26:22     -    Okami (PS2)

    Game Play:


    As you progress into the game Okami the story starts to flesh out and you begin to meet new characters. You gain new weapons and new fighting moves that you did not have in the beginning. This adds a new feel to the game because it enriches the fighting of the game which started to lag. The brush part of the game still remains fun and you find new and fun ways to use it in both battle and just wandering around. It does get glitchy sometimes. If you try to bloom a tree for example, which become very important, you can be an inch off and the brush stroke will not work but move the circle up just a little and everything is fine. The brush can also be very demanding whine it comes to closing a circle and making strait lines. If things are not perfect then nothing will happen. That is not to say that once you get the hang of it, it is still a problem. I took about 30 minutes but I finally solved the problem and have not had problems since but those first thirty minutes were hell. In the beginning of the game the voices are easy to ignore but after two hours of play the characters voices get very annoying and there are cinematic that can not be skipped over. This can become a great source of dislike. For me it is not enough to cause me to stop playing but it is annoying.



    Design:


    As I have stated before that design of the game is very unique. It looks like a Japanese ink painting. Because the realism of the game is not there but the game has its own beauty and in many cases it is a very refreshing change from graphics intensive games on the market today. The brush is also another concept from Japanese culture that is very foreign to Americans. It is a very interesting change from the only power that matters is that of nukes and other WMDs. This uses Japanese faiths to bring a new feel to American videogames. So far the levels have been different but not varied. The levels look different but what is required in each is very much the same. It goes along the basis of, revive tree, do quest, get treasure. While this is fun if things don’t change it will get boring fast. The space in the game world or use of it is very nice in Okami. You are not forced onto a narrow path most of the time, instead you are put into a nice big open area and are required to find various treasures and complete the quests the game gives you. This allows a great amount of freedom when you are running around exploring. The tone of the game mostly is that of doom and gloom. The areas that you explore are usually cursed until you are able to revive the guarding tree of that area. If you step into the curse you will be surrounded by endless blackness and haunting music, and when you fight monsters you enter their realm which is the same as the area you were just in but dark and gloomy. This adds to the separation between cursed land and purified land. I feel that it is a very unique game with a lot of potential and I have really enjoyed playing it. It is new different and fun and in today’s game market that is saying something.

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    Feb 9th, 2008 at 00:46:04     -    Okami (PS2)

    Summery:

    Okami is a game that centers on the power of the brush. You are the goddess Amaterasu reborn into the body of a giant white wolf. Your quest is to seal away the evil of the beast Orochi and cleanse the land as you did 100 years ago. You travel from place to place regaining the lost techniques of the brush that allow you to cut, create, bloom, bomb and many other god like abilities that alter the world around you.


    Game Play:

    I decided to play this game because it was demoed in class and it looked fun. I have always been infatuated with Japanese culture and the Japanese aesthetic really drew me in. The entire game looks like a giant Japanese ink painting. It is very unusual to say the least and I have always been drawn to that particular style of art. Along with the Japanese art look the names of the characters from Amaterasu the sun goddess in the Shinto faith to Issun the sprite that rides around and gives you advice which comes from Japanese fairy tales. I was interested in a game that I could play for a decent amount of time something between 20 and 30 hours. I am now in the middle of two 100 hour RPGs and I needed something that was quick but still had substance. The story so far is very entertaining and the characters are fun. The brush techniques that are incorporated into the game are very different from American games and are a lot of fun to play with. The difficulty level of the game is not so hard that it is always a challenge but the use of both combat and brush makes it tricky to use sometimes. All in all I highly recommend this game.

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    Jan 26th, 2008 at 02:02:03     -    Super Smash Brothers (N64)

    Gameplay

    During the second hour of game play I was still in the mood for mindless fighting so I did not get bored of the game, but as a single player I can see how the game can get boring. At some point I started to repeat some of the levels and characters that I had already played. No matter how you stretch it the only thing there is to do as a single player is whip the computer.
    One of the downsides to the game is the items that are periodically dropped for character use. The problem with these items is that some like the pokeball can cause instant K.O. while some of the other items are completely useless. This normally causes a mad dash to the items and gives the victor a perfect chance to kill his opponent. The game flows well because the game does not run on life but on percentage of damage taken. This means that a skilled player can continue a game for much longer than it would normally last with a set fixed health bar. All and all it was a load of fun and just what I needed.



    Design:

    The game is one more in a line of trademark 3D looking games. The characters have substance as do the surroundings but you are still limited to a 2 dimensional area to play in. This makes it necessary to jump and use objects both higher and lower in order to get around an opponent. The levels are tailored to each character but because there are only so many characters and thus so many levels at some point pretty quickly you run into old levels a lot. One of they ways that the game can be made more interesting is by increasing the difficulty level. That could mean decreasing the amount of lives that you have and or increasing the ability of the computer. Because the game centers around fighting and most if not all the characters are from other series’ there is no story or character bio driving the game. In multi player mode the game will tell you once a match is over who won and who lost but it will also tell you who did best on an individual basis. Thus several people can play as a team and still compete with each other. This allows the game to remain interesting and keeps people competitive. One aspect of the game that I do not like is that there are two characters that are able to fly to some extent. While I tend to use these characters a lot it does give a terribly unfair advantage to the person who can fly. A hit that would normally kill Mario will not kill Kirby. While this does not detract from the enjoyment the game gives it does tend to make it an unfair contest when you are playing against your friends. For its time the game was very impressive to look at but simple to use this is a very useful concept that many gamers myself included seem to like. This might be something to incorporate into my own game.

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    Jan 25th, 2008 at 21:13:13     -    Super Smash Brothers (N64)

    Summery

    In SSB of Super Smash Brothers for the Nintendo 64 the player controls one of several different characters from various games such as Mario, Pikachu or Kirby. In single player mode the object of the game is to defeat all the other characters as well as some bosses at the end. In multi player mode you can fight friends or computer controlled characters in anything ranging from 1 on 1 to 2 on 2 to 3 on 1. You can unlock different characters and play the levels on any difficulty mode that you like.

    Game play:

    Some times it is a lot of fun to play an in-depth 100 hour RPG but sometimes I just want a fun sometimes mindless fighting game. There is not much about SSB that is bad. The characters are old favorites and often fun to bash and smash. They all have various different special moves making playing with each character new and exciting. And each character has his or her own special level to play on. There is really no story behind SSB that is why it is such a great game when you just want all out mayhem without having to think much. This is a good game for single players but the best part comes out in multi player mode. This mode is not limited to multiple players though, it is better that way. One player can designate anywhere from one to three characters as computer controlled on any of four possible teams. With friends you can have them take over for the computer making this game loads of fun and making its replay value skyrocket. With the use of the teams you can have even 2 on 2 or you can have a four way battle royal or anything in between. The game is simple to learn a little bit more difficult to master and a really good time.

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