Eternal Sonata Encore Playthrough (Xbox 360)

Eternal Sonata Cover

Eternal Sonata is easily one of my favourite jRPGs of this generation on the Xbox (well, not that there are so many on this console). I love its atmosphere, its graphics and its colors. I also like the battle system, although it becomes very repetitive after a while. Unfortunately the game is not very long (I completed the first playthrough with my girlfriend in about 40 hours, including Mysterious Unison) and, even more unfortunately, there is no sign of a sequel, and probably there will never be one. But I hear a new Call of Duty is coming out, so don’t despair.

Anyway, I have just completed my encore playthrough and I wanted to brag about it here. Technically, though, I haven’t really completed it, because I haven’t beaten the final boss, I just got up to the Xylophone Tower and then backtracked to get all the achievements I was missing. I guess I can really finish Encore mode in the PS3 version (yeah, I am going to play this for two more times, while I wait for the new Call of Duty, you know), because of the extra characters and extra stuff.

I was expecting a more difficult challenge to be honest. Although enemies are more powerful and you level up normally, like in the first playthrough, I think that being able to use Party Level 6 from the beginning of the Encore playthrough makes things a bit too easy (the only times I died were during two or three boss fights if I am not mistaken), and I was pretty much never overleveled.

Overall it was a nice experience and I am looking forward to playing this again on the PS3 because of the extra content. Again, this time I will probably completely finish Encore mode, including the final boss and Mysterious Unison), because I will play this with my girlfriend (the one who bought me Heavy Rain, remember?) and I don’t think that she will let me put it down before that happens.

RPG Maker VX Ace: To Buy Or Not To Buy?

RPG Maker VX Ace Logo

It’s one of those times of the year when Steam really helps you lose some of your hard-earned money: this time it’s thanks to the Summer Getaway Sale (which ends tomorrow by the way).

This time I haven’t bought many things actually, especially because I bought pretty much everything I was interested in during last year’s Christmas Sale. One thing has caught my attention lately though: RPG Maker VX Ace. It’s one of those things that you think about and you never know if you should buy or not 😀 I am actually still not sure about what to do, the discount is interesting and I for sure wouldn’t buy it when it goes back to the full price.

Oh, I really don’t know. Does anybody of you have experience with this tool? I don’t even know why I am asking this since I am still my main reader, but it doesn’t hurt trying 😀

Update: I haven’t bought it, because I saw that there is a Lite version available which looks pretty feature-packed too. I might give that a try first.

Heavy Rain, aka One of The Best Games Ever

Heavy Rain Logo

I have recently completed Heavy Rain together with my girlfriend (with just one of the several endings available for now) and I immediately need to make a couple of acknowledgements:

  1. Thank you, thank you, thank you my dear girlfriend for buying this game;
  2. Thank you shop which put this game into the discount bin so that my girlfriend could buy if for 1€ (this fact also raises an interesting question: did this game really sell so bad that they had to start selling it for this price to get rid of all the copies?).

If the answer to this question is “Yes”, we have the proof that lots of people playing videogames should be doing something else, really. Anyway, I’m sorry for all the people who are playing with YAFPS (Yet Another FPS) and that don’t know about Heavy Rain because they are really missing out on one of the best games ever made.

Seriously, this game is that good. It has an incredible storyline, great voice acting, very good replay value because of the several available endings available, addictive gameplay, great graphics, amazing music and gorgeous atmospheres. There is nothing more a gamer could ask for (yes, I hear you, besides a sequel, of course).

This game reminded me of Metal Gear Solid in some way, especially because of the great importance that storyline and videos have in the whole game. I can also go as far as saying that Heavy Rain in basically an interactive movie rather then a game which, in itself, can be put into the genre of point and click adventures, even though there is no clicking. Instead, players are required to press buttons in the correct order to successfully complete the actions. It may sound kind of dull, but believe me, it isn’t. The controls are especially great during action-packed scenes, where you will be required to compulsively press a button enough times to be able to proceed with the next action. If you fail, the following action will most probably be a different one.

Because everything you do in Heavy Rain has a consequence, which can lead to minor storyline changes or also to a completely different ending. This makes this game incredibly fascinating and adds a very good replay value to it. I will replay it as many times as necessary to unlock everything and to see every ending. Period.

Guys, if you like good games, you probably have already played this game. If you like good games but somehow you haven’t played this yet, finish reading this post, thank me in the comments and go out and buy one copy. I said go go go!

Forza Horizon – Multiplayer Mode

After writing about the Single Player Mode in Forza Horizon, it is now time to write what I think about the Multiplayer Mode. It is not going to be a very lengthy post because there really isn’t much to say in my opinion.

Because this game is not really a simulation, forget about having clean races when you play online. People are just going to crash into you trying to make you get out of the track. Clean overtakes are extremely rare and when you think that you don’t get any kind of penalty for this kind of behavior you can see that if you do want to race clean, you should play with something else. But again, this is no regular Forza game, so I guess this is something that you shouldn’t expect from Horizon, still I think it is good to know how multiplayer racing is going to be like before buying the game, being multiplayer such an important part of every racing game.

There are seven different multiplayer modes you can choose from:

  • Circuit
  • Point to Point
  • Street Racing
  • Free Roam
  • King
  • Infection
  • Cat and Mouse

The first four modes are pretty self-explanatory, so I’m just going to focus on the last three: they are boring. Seriously, they really are. They are more like mini-games rather than regular racing modes, basically requiring you to crash into other cars to steal the King badge or to crash into other cars to infect them or to crash into other cars to stop them from finishing the race on time. If this sounds like fun to you, go ahead, those modes will keep you entertained for quite some time. Otherwise just stick to the regular racing modes, they can be frustrating due to the driving style of some other players but they can definitely keep you playing much longer than the single player mode.

Overall, Forza Horizon is a good game. I have enjoyed playing it but it’s one of those games that I will never pick up again after completing it and which didn’t really become memorable in any way for me. I guess I am just more suited to sim racers.