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October 20th, 2014


03:02 pm - Breaker of Chains
For the second game on my Xbox I played Infinite Undiscovery which I finished yesterday. It's developed by tri-Ace and published by Square Enix.

I liked it quite a bit! The premise is that the evil Order of Chains has chained the moon so it stays in one place, which is wreaking havoc on the land. You are part of the Liberation Force which is going around breaking the chains. There's some nice character development as you start out as a reluctant companion and evolve into competent leader. All the characters are likable (except Edward, who starts out as rather a jerk) and have stories of their own.

The gameplay is action-based. Pressing A deals a quick attack, whereas pressing B deals a slower attack that has more power behind it. You can also hold down A or B to execute special attacks, which are as signed in the Battle menu. There's a neat system in which you Connect to other characters. During battle, you can Connect to them to perform special actions. For instance, Aya is a bow user, so you can Connect to her to snipe enemies from a distance. If you Connect to characters in town, dialogue with NPCs may change.

The game reminded me a bit of a western RPG because there are quests to be done. Many are fetch quests and require running about town a lot. There are also some killing enemies quests. Even with all the quests, the game is pretty short - I only put 40 hours into it. I started it again on Hard mode, lol. This time I'm going to spend more time on crafting, in order to get the crafting achievements. One thing I dislike is that shops change their wares, and in endgame there's not a lot of materials to be found in the shops, making crafting impossible. I've read that you can download vouchers from the Live marketplace that fixes this, but my Xbox isn't connected to the network, so that rules that out, darn. So I'm going to stockpile materials and do crafting as soon as possible to try to get around this issue. I also might skip the shop upgrade quests.

I really enjoyed this game, and wish I had more JRPGs to play. I do have Chrono Trigger for the Nintendo DS which I might play next, haven't decided. Otherwise, it will be a western RPG on my Xbox. I've got a playthrough of Dragon Age: Origins in the works, but I might restart it because it's been so long since I played it. I also have Mass Effect, which I barely got into.

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Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished

(Take an adventure with me)

October 10th, 2014


03:33 pm - We survive
My mom gave me $50 for my birthday, so I bought a new Xbox 360 controller (the A button on my old one was broken). This meant I could now play games again instead of just using my Xbox as a media player, and so I played Final Fantasy XIII.

I wasn't impressed with the trailer for this game, so I didn't have high expectations going into it. I was pleasantly surprised to find it quite enjoyable. The story is solid; each of the characters had a reason for their actions.

The battle system is turn-based. You control the leader of your party; the other two party members are controlled by AI. As the ATB charges, you can enter commands for your character to perform. The commands vary depending on the role of the characters: Commando and Ravager (damage dealers), Medic, Sentinel (tank), Synergist (buffer) or Saboteur (debuffer). You can make paradigms for your team with different roles set for each member. For example, I often used Relentless Assault (RAV COM RAV) or Combat Clinic (MED SEN MED). You can freely change between paradigms during battle, but I found that most of the time this wasn't necessary. Also, instead of inputting commands myself, it was easiest just to choose Auto-battle, which meant that fights were pretty much just mashing the A button. Pretty boring.

There were not many sidequests in this game. There's a series of 64 missions you can do; I did most of them, except for the ones which the guide I was following warned were extremely difficult. I wish there had been a quest line to make some ultimate weapons; if there was, I didn't discover it. This game was also missing out on the feeling of getting new, powerful weapons as you progress in the game. You can upgrade weapons you have; once upgraded, they tended to be better than new weapons you find. So my characters used their initial starting weapons for most of the game. I did change some of them to weapons with more favorable passive abilities, but never did I have the feeling of having an uber-weapon.

I was a bit alarmed when it asked for disc 2 after a mere 9 hours, worrying the game would be short, but in the end I put about 86 hours into it, which is decent-sized. I'm sad it ended, though, because I was enjoying it and now I don't know what I'll do. I will probably start a different Xbox game after I finish reading my library books. I'm thinking of doing Mirror's Edge next.

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Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished

(Take an adventure with me)

February 5th, 2014


03:07 pm
So I found out what happens when you enter the shrines in Final Fantasy I--you enter a GBA-only dungeon. There's four of them, and one of them is HUGE. Forty floors! You get to fight bosses from other Final Fantasy games. It effectively doubles the playtime of the game.

I'm running out of games to play. I finished Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days. Had only 5 hours left to play on it. I still need to finish FFIV. After that, I'm not sure what I'll do.

In other news, I've been crocheting and knitting a lot. I finished a baby blanket for my newest nephew recently. We left the baptism party before my sister opened gifts, though, so I don't know how she liked it. I worry about what I'm going to do when I run out of yarn. How am I going to keep busy then?

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(Take an adventure with me)

January 13th, 2014


03:38 pm - preemptive strike!
I've been playing a lot of Final Fantasy games lately.

Final Fantasy: Played this in one sitting, overnight on a night when I had coffee and couldn't sleep. It went much easier than my first playthrough, probably because I was playing the GBA version. I'm wondering if the walkthrough I used left things out, like what happens if you go through the doors in the shrines? So I'm going to play it again and explore. I actually already started a game with four white mages for the challenge of it, but got my ass kicked by the Psychodemons, so will likely start again with a better team.

Final Fantasy II: I wrote a walkthrough for it. Except the bosses were rather easy (again, playing the GBA version) so I have no good strategy notes for them, which means the walkthrough is garbage. I'm now playing Soul of Rebirth, which is hard. I fear I won't have enough ethers to last me the rest of the game. Should that happen, I'll likely restart it, this time taking the time to train up my characters some.

Final Fantasy IV: I'm in the final dungeon. I found this game difficult at times, but I liked the story. I'll probably try to finish it once I finish tinkering with FFII.

Final Fantasy V: I loved the job class system so much I played the game twice, so that I could max out all the jobs in the second playthrough. I even got the 3 GBA jobs. The story is solid, too. I beat Omega, but chickened out on trying Shinryu - something to do for the next time. I also need to try the GBA dungeon.

Final Fantasy VI: Like FFVII, I felt this game was a bit overhyped. I did like it quite a bit, but... well, I had heard people like it better than VII so I was expecting something amazing, and it failed to live up to that for me. What I did really appreciate is how each character had a backstory that was explained. I need to play this again, because I missed some things, like getting Mog as soon as you can get him and saving Shadow.

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Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished

(Take an adventure with me)

June 11th, 2013


10:58 am - Epic post is epic, part IV: Final Fantasy XV
The big news is that Final Fantasy Versus XIII has been rebranded and is now known as Final Fantasy XV. Except this isn't actually that big of news as it's been rumored that this would happen for at least a month now.

But! The official announcement came with a new trailer, OMG! About time, as it's been four years since my original write-up of the teaser and first trailer, and two years since the last trailer was released.

Here it is. Watch!



trailer break-downCollapse )

The music draws less attention than in the first two trailers, but is still just as epic. I get the sense that like the others, it was arranged just for this trailer. I need the soundtrack to this game!

The trailer solidifies what we've already deduced from the teaser and first trailer. Noctis is a prince. He has some sort of mystical connection with Stella (they both see the light). The bad guys are after the crystal, and want to kill Noct. So, there's not really anything new here... except for a few new faces. Those are umbrella guy (evil), brown-haired guy (ally?), and black-haired woman (unknown). The most intriguing part of the trailer are the words "the fifteenth coming". The coming of what? I'd like to know.

I feel this trailer has less of a WOW factor than the first two. The first two really were excellent story-telling. This one has a bit less story-telling in it and more just showing off. About half the trailer is gameplay footage, which does need to be seen at this stage in the development. Although I'm less OMG! over this trailer than the first two, I think it's a solid trailer.

I am not sure how I feel about Versus becoming a numbered title. Can't help but feel that numbered titles should be turn-based, you know? But then again, 11 and 14 aren't turn-based, so I suppose it's okay. Heck, I'm just glad the game wasn't cancelled! For a while there were rumors that it had been quietly shelved. I can't see that happening now, not when they've upgraded it to be the next numbered title.

What are your thoughts?

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Current Mood: excitedexcited

(Take an adventure with me)

May 25th, 2013


08:52 pm - games and knitting
Wish I had the money to get a paid account here. I miss all my icons. Wanted to use my bored icon, but that's not one of the ones I have as a free account. Grr.

So, the U.S. Sudoku championship was fun. Though I, uh, kind of cheated a bit and used an app I had downloaded the other day. I solved one puzzle legitimately, and another three with help of the app. There's 20 problems so even with cheating I came nowhere near close to winning, so I don't feel too bad about it. Well, okay, I do feel bad because it means I am weak weak weak, but... the goal today was to have fun, and I did. So there.

The U.S. Puzzle Championship is next month, and I'm looking forward to that one. I usually do Battleships, the find-the-differences puzzle, and word search, if they have one. Maybe I will practice with an older test. I'd have to download them since last year's test was done on my no-longer-functioning Mac mini.

I did some knitting today and finished a project. It's a small shawlette, and was done as part of a mystery KAL. Like everyone else in the group, mine came out smaller than expected. I'm currently blocking it, and will probably try to stretch it even more. As is, I'm not sure it's big enough for me.

Right now I am bored. I tried relieving the boredom in Runescape, but the game crashed on me right as I dinged level 56 in Fishing. Don't feel like fighting with Runescape crashes tonight. I'll probably end up playing FFV again, though I'm not terribly in the mood.

Thought last night: Sherlock mood theme. I must investigate and see if anyone has made one.

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Current Mood: boredbored

(Take an adventure with me)

May 24th, 2013


10:46 pm - friday night
I've spent the last few days playing Final Fantasy V. Still waaay behind for [community profile] moogle_university, but I've finished the first world and did THE BATTLE ON THE BIG BRIDGE, which has music so epic it must be written in caps. I got to the first town and decided to break for the night there.

If I keep this amount of playing up, I might be able to finish the game this month. If not, I'll try to finish ASAP in June. I do definitely want to finish this game, though. This is my fourth time trying to play it; something always came up to cause me to put it aside. I don't want that to happen again.

I got an email from the U.S. Puzzle team people reminding me that the U.S. Sudoku Championship is tomorrow. I've done the U.S. Puzzle Championship for about six years now, but never tried the Sudoku. Think I'm going to give it a try. I can do Sudoku but I'm rather slow at it, so there's no way I'd make the team. My goal is to complete two puzzles during the time allowed. I would be ecstatic if I got three done. I tried two of the practice puzzles, and those will probably be the ones I do on the test (standard Sudoku, and Staircase Sudoku).

Still making my way through the 221b Picspam thread. I'm on page 1200 of 1526. The group is doing a Holmesian watch-a-long this month; this week, they're discussing the CBS show Elementary. So I tried watching an ep of it last night on CBS' website. I got about halfway through and turned it off. I should really try to view it on its own merits and not compare it to Sherlock, but... dammit, it wasn't Sherlock. :p I'm not sure how I feel about them making Holmes a drug addict. Picspam reminded me that in canon, Holmes does do some cocaine, so I guess it isn't too far out there that he'd be a recovering addict. I'm still not sure I like it. I wish I could have seen the first episode of Elementary, because maybe it would explain how Watson ends up with him in a way that satisfies me, because I'm not too satisfied that she's his "sober buddy". Though in the ep I watched, it appears they're past that and she's living with him and learning to solve cases.

Anyway--I watched far enough to see The Big Reveal (pretty sure it was the season finale I was watching) which I won't spoil in this post but would be willing to discuss in comments. Interesting. Again, I can't help comparing it to Sherlock, and thus I ended up wrinkling my nose at it a bit. To be non-spoilery: I think I liked it in general but not specific. Wish CBS had more eps on its website, because I'd like to view the pilot but it's not up there, and I'm starting to feel nervous about torrenting stuff, so I probably will pass on it. Maybe I'll give the series a chance next season and catch them on CBS' website as they are.

For now, it is back to Sherlock, with my third viewing of A Scandal in Belgravia. I leave you with this Sherlock fanvid for your amusement.



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Current Mood: bouncybouncy

(Take an adventure with me)

February 13th, 2013


07:26 pm - Final Fantasy II
So I've been following [community profile] moogle_university, in which [personal profile] lassarina and [personal profile] seventhe are playing through the Final Fantasy games. This month it's Final Fantasy II's turn, so I thought I'd play along.

It's a fairly short game: I started it on Friday and finished it last night. Total play time was just about 18.5 hours.

thoughts under cut, including spoilersCollapse )

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Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
Current Music: Final Fantasy II soundtrack

(Take an adventure with me)

February 11th, 2013


11:00 am - Nerd Wars, BAMCAL, and other Ravelry challenges
Since I've been knitting and crocheting a lot lately, I've also been spending my fair amount of time on Ravelry. I thought I would share some of the groups that are keeping my interest.

Nerd Wars

Nerd Wars is awesome. Players divide into teams based upon a specific nerdom. A few examples: Team Browncoats for fans of Firely/Serenity, team Jazz Hands for fans of the theater, Team 1-Up for fans of video games, and Team Hypothesis for fans of science. Each tournament lasts three months, with each month composing one round. Challenges are posed in five categories: Discovery, Encyclopedia, Nerdology, Giving Geeks, and Flexible Schedule. Players can also choose to do a dissertation: a project that will take three months to complete. There is no minimum participation required for Nerd Wars; you can join a team and should life implode and prevent you from answering any challenges, that's ok! No one will think less of you.

An example of a challenge is this month's Nerdology challenge, A NERD'S DREAM DATE:
Today is you lucky day! You have won a dinner for two, for you and your favorite character from another nerdery!

Now here’s the crucial question: what will you eat?

Your challenge this month is to craft something inspired by the food your favorite character from another nerdery loves so much. Please tell us in your submission who you would have dinner with and what food inspired your project.


Tournament 7 is already underway, but it's not too late to participate! You can't join a team at this time, but you can still play as a Ninja Warrior! Since this is my first time playing in Nerd Wars, I decided to be a Ninja for this tournament. I've already completed the Nerdology and Encyclopedia challenges, and am working on the Discovery challenge.

BAMCAL

Short for Block-A-Month Crochet-A-Long, the BAMCAL's goal is to crochet an afghan in a year by completing 1-4 blocks a month (afghan size varies by how many blocks you do). I'm doing both 12" squares a month, for an afghan that will be 6x4 blocks.

Other challenges:

Harry Potter House Cup

The Harry Potter House Cup is very similar to Nerd Wars. Players get sorted into houses, and answer challenges posted under each class. There are also OWLs, NEWTS, and something called BROOM. There is a minimum participation requirement of 1 class per participant. There also seems to be a limit to how many people can get sorted per month, but those who are not sorted can still play as a Not Quite First Year student.

I know less about this challenge since I just discovered it recently via a Nerd Wars player, but thought I'd mention it since I know there's some Harry Potter fans amongst my readers.

Dishcloth Weekly

The Dishcloth Weekly Knitalong is just that. They offer both crochet and knitting patterns. Dishcloths are a great way to practice new techniques, or get some instant gratification since they work up so quickly. This week they are learning how to do entrelac, in both knitting and tunisian crochet.

Crochet Clothing Crochet-A-Long

When I first joined Ravelry I was more of a crocheter than knitter, so it didn't take me long to discover the Crochet Clothing Crochet-A-Long. Members vote on what project to make; this latest round, they're looking at skirts. I haven't yet made anything, but I love that this group exists.

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(Take an adventure with me)

October 31st, 2012


10:53 pm - this is halloween
(side note: I really can't wait until we can choose which icons to keep on account expiration (pretty sure that's a filed bug). I wanted to use my Disney one, but alas, I don't have it right now. Second choise was my fruits basket one, but that one's kaput, too. >_< so, chose this one because the keyword fits halloween)

No one comes trick-or-treating at my house. I didn't dress up or go to any parties. But I did celebrate Halloween - by eating as many pumpkin dishes as possible!

No, I can't give recipes - these are all prepared foods I bought at Aldi.

Earlier today: nommed on Pumpkin Bark

Appetizer: Halloween black-and-orange tortilla chips, served with pumpkin salsa. I liked this quite a bit, and think the salsa would make a good marinade

Dinner: Pumpkin Squash Ravioli frozen meal - Pumpkin-filled ravioli with a buttery sage sauce, asparagus and butternut squash. I just ate the ravioli. They were quite good, but rather sweet, so I could barely finish them.

Desert: Pumpkin sugar cookies with pumpkin spice milk

Earlier this week, I made pumpkin bars from a box mix. So happily, I've had my normal allotment of pumpkin this fall, even while being on food stamps. <3

There's only an hour left of Halloween here, but that's still enough time to enjoy the following two videos from Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Walt Disney World. The halloween parade is my favorite parade there.
videos under cutCollapse )

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