Review: Final Fantasy XIII-2

Final Fantasy 13-2

Two years ago, Final Fantasy XIII caused quite a stir among long time fans of the series. As the long-awaited current generation entry into the legendary franchise, expectations were high — and disappointment was even higher. While the game managed to have some quality gameplay mechanics that changed the formula for the better, the story and some of the design decisions seemed like an enormous step backward for the series. In many ways, fans have considered Final Fantasy XIII-2 to be a “do-over” or an apology for the lackluster Final Fantasy XIII. But does it go far enough to resolve fans’ woes? Continue reading Review: Final Fantasy XIII-2

Review: Final Fantasy XIII

Final Fantasy 13There is nothing quite like the release of a long-standing franchise giant like Final Fantasy XIII to get some great gaming discussions going. Square-Enix’s new entry to the well known franchise has started a slew of discussions from fanboys, haters and regular gamers alike, all armed with their own talking points about a franchise with an esteemed history, and how the newest addition stacks up compared to its long line of ancestors.

Final Fantasy XIII was first introduced at E3 2006, promising lush visuals, a deep and rich story, and some things we’ve never seen from this set of games before. Since then, people the world over have been itching to play it, to see if Square-Enix could continue to deliver on the leaps that the previous two titles had made. After a cross platform announcement and its own set of development issues, the game is finally here. So, how is it? Let’s talk about that.
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GamerSushi Asks: What Are You Playing?

FF13You know the drill, fools. Every now and then we just want to check in, find out what everybody is playing, and maybe even compare notes on some new games. Let’s do it.

Right now, I’ve been totally swamped with writing stuff, but when I’ve had a chance to play some video games, I’m most playing Final Fantasy XIII. I’m about 35 hours into it now, which means I’m only about 5 hours past the point when the real game starts. Sadly, the game has about a 30 hour entrance fee before you are trained up good and proper. That being said, I love it and I’m having a blast with it. Just… dang, 30 hours Square? Oh well. I probably won’t even care now that I’m to the really fun stuff.

Whenever I’m not doing that, I dip my toes into the multiplayer for Battlefield: Bad Company 2, which is still just as much fun as when it came out. Hopefully, I can finish up FF13 in the near future and pick up either Splinter Cell: Conviction (hearing great things) and/or 3D Dot Game Heroes for the PS3.

Has anyone played any of these games mentioned? Thoughts so far? What are you guys playing? Go!

The Addictive Nature of Gaming

Video Game AddictionIt’s 3 o’clock in the morning. My eyes are heavy like somebody has tied weights to them. I can feel them starting to droop, but I don’t care. Who cares if I have work in the morning? What does it matter if I’m running on empty with only the blinding light of my TV casting dark shadows about the living room? I’m just trying to get to the next boss. Trying to reach the next level. Trying to grab that upgrade. Wanting to get another headshot.

Whatever the reason for doing this to ourselves, we’ve all done it at one point or another. And while it may not always be the lure of a soft pillow to sleep on, we’ve all blown off plenty of things to do just a little bit more in a game we love or loathe. Sometimes it’s a girlfriend, a spouse, a job, a duty, or a social activity. They’re all just different suits that represent the same thing: distractions.

And the thing that is really odd to me, is that I don’t really do this with my other hobbies. There are plenty of other things that I love to do, besides playing videogames. I write, play guitar, watch movies, read books, hang out with friends. But none of those things make me think about them when I’m gone to the level that a Final Fantasy does. Or a Call of Duty. Or anything in Bioware’s library. So what makes videogaming so different than everything else?
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GamerSushi Asks: Games You Miss?

Final Fantasy 13I just spent a whole weekend in Austin, Texas for South By Southwest Interactive, the glorious tech and social media festival. I got to experience a whole lot of awesome things like hanging with some folks from Revision3, Burnie Burns from RoosterTeeth, and fans of Web Zeroes.

However, one thing I didn’t get a lot of: video games. As much fun as I ended up having, whenever I’m separated from gaming for a few days or more I start to go a little nuts. All weekend long, I couldn’t stop thinking about Battlefield: Bad Company 2’s sweet multiplayer and Final Fantasy 13. Despite its opening story issues and inherent Japanese-ness, Final Fantasy 13 is still tickling at a bone that doesn’t get tickled too often these days. I’m not sure what it is, but even though I had some complaints about the opening chapters, I keep finding myself drawn back to it.

So, what games do you guys start to miss when you have to get away from gaming for too long? What are you playing right now?

Final Fantasy 13: The Last Traditional FF Game?

Final Fantasy 13Have you ever tried to tell a non-gamer that you are playing Final Fantasy (insert random number here), only to have them reply with the stupid joke “guess the other ones weren’t so final”? Because that has happened to me more times than I can count, honestly. Well, it looks like that dumb remark might actually find its punchline with Final Fantasy XIII, in a sense.

Square Enix head dude Yoichi Wada said in an interview today that Final Fantasy XIII could mark the end of an era, and that whether or not the franchise will continue its current format “remains to be seen.” Apparently, the team might move on to bigger and better things, including “next generation” play styles to hit a new audience. I’m not entirely certain what that means, but I’ve got a couple of guesses: namely that “a new audience” is not-so-subtle code for “Westerners”, and the new “play styles” they mention could involve motion controls or FPS/action games.

I’m not suggesting an FF FPS, but that Square might move into a genre they think is more suitable to broadening their core buyers. Regardless of what it entails, I do have mixed emotions about it. On the one hand, I love JRPG’s and their emphasis on grand stories and gorgeous art. On the other hand, the formula is stale (though FF does it best) and might need a shot in the arm.

What do you guys make of this news?

Source- Shacknews

GamerSushi Demands: Post Your Lootz!

Well, it’s Christmas time, and naturally that means one thing: epic loot! For many gamers, this is the time of year that we can’t stand waiting for, because we know that Christmas Day will reap a bountiful harvest of the things we’ve been dying to play for the last year or even longer.

So far, I haven’t been able to do any present opening, so I’m not sure of what gaming things might be waiting for me, if any. If I get some money/gift cards, I’ll be very tempted to buy Left 4 Dead 2, which I keep hearing is even better than the first one. If nothing else, I’m going to be saving up money for Mass Effect 2 (January), Splinter Cell (February), Final Fantasy XIII (March) and Heavy Rain. This week I’ve been playing Assassin’s Creed 2 and while it starts off pretty terribly, it’s getting better fast.

So, what kind of loot did you guys get? Feel free to post about it, gaming or otherwise. Go!

New Final Fantasy XIII Trailer Says Nothing New

So I feel like I’ve been seeing the same Final Fantasy XIII Trailer for 2 years. It’s always the same shots, over and over, and we still don’t have any gameplay to look at. Granted, the same thing was the case for FF XII and that game turned out to be incredible, but even still. Anywho, here’s a new FFXIII trailer.

What do you guys think? Will this game be any good?