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About Grazza

  • Rank
    Metal King

Personal Information

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  • Interests
    strength training, photography


  • Nintendo Systems Owned
  • Favourite Game?
    Wind Waker, Dragon Quest VIII
  • Favourite Video Game Character?
    Risky Boots
  • Gender

Game Info

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  1. I can see how Bravely Default and Octopath Traveler scratch the "classic Final Fantasy" itch - FF seems to have been uniquely successful in the West and is probably the only J-RPG that's a household name. I also believe Dragon Quest XI was well marketed amongst avid gamers, with a superb demo and coverage in the Directs (as @Vileplume2000 says). But I'd say TV advertising is still extremely important. I saw ads for Mario Maker 2 and Link's Awakening (can't remember if I saw Fire Emblem), but none for Dragon Quest. They just didn't get across that it's up there with those big Nintendo releases. Speaking to people at work, they've bought Link's Awakening and Mario Maker, but though they may have heard of DQ XI, they haven't felt the desire to buy it. It could be the cartoony graphics, but that didn't affect Breath of the Wild. And it could be that it's turn-based, but that doesn't affect Pokémon. It really is a mystery.
  2. It is a massive shame this game hasn't sold better. All year I have witnessed how, through good advertising, Nintendo has managed to make Fire Emblem, Mario Maker and Link's Awakening household names, and yet this isn't on as many people's radar. And no disrespect to Link's Awakening, but it is just a pleasant remake of an old game that takes a few days to complete, whereas Dragon Quest XI is one of the best video game adventures you'd believe is possible to make. It is an outstanding piece of software. The only reason I haven't posted about it more is because I'm constantly picking my jaw up off the floor. I think we know the answer then - make the game more controversial. Free skimpy bikini DLC for Jade!
  3. Love it! I may be a bit slow, but I make a good shield. Really looking forward to playing this sometime, actually. I gave up on Android, but will enjoy it more on Switch.
  4. Figured it was time to post a bit of an update on this. Dragon Quest XI is without doubt the best game I have played for 15 years. As much as I enjoyed VIII, I have felt out of sync with the way the games industry has gone since then. I didn't dare believe anyone would again make a game with as much charm and humour, or as big and long but still well designed. Other games are good at telling you a story, but Dragon Quest has a unique way of making you feel you are going through an adventure. Even though it's all scripted, it feels like you are making it happen. There are just enough sidequests that I don't feel overwhelmed, but do have a real choice of what I do each time I load it up. The overworld is large, but divided into manageable sections so you always keep a sense of where you are. There's one way it's probably even better than VIII, and that is the plotting. There are so many twists and turns, it's insane. But whereas I would play other games cautiously, Dragon Quest has a way of making you trust the storytellers. I happily go wherever the game takes me, knowing that it's not going to drop me in too much trouble.
  5. Sega Ages (Summer M2)

    They'd be very misguided then, as they haven't released the coin-op many times. They made it available for Wii but, to my knowledge, have not done so since.
  6. Sega Ages (Summer M2)

    You got something as obscure as that, and I can't even get Golden Axe.
  7. Having not been much into games recently, I didn't know if I'd be able to get back into this... but I was wrong! It is absolutely brilliant and I'm re-hooked already. The level grinding, exploration and skill tree development... it is just a sheer joy to play. I keep wanting to play this and VIII through an 8K VR headset, for some reason. The Puff-Puff shenanigans have become a bit dodgy! I knew it was going to be, but had to give it a try!
  8. Your 2019 Gaming Diary

    That's some good advice from Ike - play VIII and if you enjoy it, go on to XI. I'm afraid to say VII is not up there with the others at all and is the one game in the series I wouldn't play again. IV, V and VI are all quite enjoyable. Personally, I'd wait for them to appear on Switch, which I suspect they will.
  9. Virtual Reality

    I'm really excited by VR, but I see it as a "screen" technology rather than a "game" technology (which I realise is ignorant of all the control innovations). I just think it will take off when people are happy to use it as a screen for various things as much as they are happy to use an HDTV. Like @S.C.G I do prefer to keep everything wired, and it does bother me that a lot of VR will be done via streaming, but those things are two of my wider technological grumbles. If I had my way it'd still be the 1990s and I'd be going to buy VR experiences on disc from Virgin Megastores. But the reality is it just couldn't be done well then. Like I always say, I believe VR needs even bigger leaps than it's had. I've only tried the 1080p PSVR, but I'd be really interested to know how much more realistic 8k could take it, with a wider field-of-view as well. VR is not for me yet, but I'm really pleased there are companies making progress with it.
  10. In my opinion, games are losing the neatness and rigidity that once made them satisfying. I don't even like the fluid overworld in the Link's Awakening remake, as part of the charm of the original was knowing where you were on the "grid". Similarly, even Wind Waker, whilst being a very immersive 3D game, still had a neat sea chart that let you know which parts of the 7x7 grid you had explored. We don't need unnecessary restrictions, but we do need rules. By becoming so open world and sandbox, games are losing the pleasure of playing within set parameters. One thing Breath of the Wild absolutely needed was item gating. Zelda's popularity has been built on that gameplay, and without them it was formless. Whilst exploration has always been integral to Zelda, BotW seemed as though there was no consideration as to how much exploration was on offer at any one time. That said, I accept Metroid needn't be exactly the same. BotW could have been a lot better if permanent upgrades were scattered around - once you've got the Fire Tunic (for example), your standard clothes should have just been upgraded, rather than having to craft and equip several different outfits. Similar with bow, gauntlet and sword upgrades (if the game had all those). Metroid could do this with the Varia Suit, Ice Beam and Super Missiles as usual, and it would be better than BotW for it. It's undeniably a fair question though - how could Metroid be improved over Metroid Prime? What did the developers want to do that they couldn't possibly achieve on GameCube? I hope there are such avenues, and that they're done well. A slightly bigger game would be fine, with carefully designed thrills planned throughout as usual, but I don't believe it has much to learn from Link's last outing.
  11. Indie Games

    Now this actually looks great! I'm a massive fan of beat-'em-ups, and we've enjoyed a renaissance of them lately, but this one looks to scratch the itch more than most.
  12. Nintendo Switch Online: SNES

    I've never considered myself a skilled gamer, but for some reason I've always had a high tolerance of the Ghouls 'n' Ghosts games - at least the 16-bit ones. I found it was just about manageable to score enough points to get extra continues. As for the whole "doing the game twice" thing though, I never had the time for that until the invention of save states.
  13. They were fishnet stockings too. I finished the demo last night so can explain it exactly. You get to a point where there's a door/checkpoint you can't go through. It did indeed take me 10 hours, although you can still grind or craft afterwards. One thing you can't do is go back to the earlier towns, so completionists might want to play it at a slower pace. But yes, what a demo! You can only do a demo like this when you're hugely confident in the product. I'm pretty sure anyone who likes RPGs and is prepared to play a long game will want to buy it - in fact, it feels so much like you've really started the game. I guess Dragon Quest was the one truly top-class series that needed more recognition in the West, so a long demo was a good move.
  14. I didn't want to be an ass, but it's South-West - Devon, Somerset, Bristol etc, like Alice in The Vicar of Dibley. Oh yes! It is outstanding! Without exaggeration, this is the game many of us have been waiting 15 years for - an HD Dragon Quest in the same style as VIII. From the moment I heard the opening music and saw the classic DQ font, I felt reconnected with something. It's very much like what I was imaging all those years ago - large 3D towns where you can go up on the roofs and look out of windows at the "real" environment, but also reassuringly old-fashioned in many regards, such as the save system. In terms of story, it still has what so many other tales lack - charm. Dragon Quest is not so sanitised that nothing bad can ever happen, but it's mostly done with humour and likeable characters. In fact, if anything they've made a lot of progress in terms of plot. So much happened, I actually felt swept along, as though I wasn't setting the pace. Although this could induce a fear of missing something, I decided to just go with the flow. From the battle system to the skill trees and the way you also gain abilities as you level up, this is my idea of how RPGs should be. If I have any slight doubts, it's that it's clearly a huge game, and I prefer designers to keep a tight rein on overworlds. That said, it does at least feel designed. From what I can tell there are clear barriers and item gates, so you do at least know which areas you're meant to get used to first. With such big fields and towns, I do have a concern I'll miss a lot of hidden items, but 2D mode may possibly help with making this a bit clearer. Undoubtedly, the graphics are also a bit soft, but that's what you get when a game is designed for a more powerful system. If I had a PS4 and a TV I liked playing on, I'd have played it already, but we're fortunate to get it on Switch. The demo is very generous and does an amazing job of making me want to buy the game (as if I wasn't going to... ), but yes, I'm impressed. To know there is a new Dragon Quest adventure ahead is a very special feeling.
  15. Fire Emblem: Three Houses (26th July 2019)

    I feel like you must have been particularly good at it, because this is my third Fire Emblem game and it did take me about 60 hours. It's just too tempting not to grind! Even so, with a lot of grinding, I still only found it easy/medium. I completed it with Black Eagles, then jumped straight back in with Blue Lions! In fact, I was going to share some thoughts, but I just don't know what I think of the game. My overall feeling is that, although it's an excellent piece of software, the whole experience is just a bit too "much". There are so many twists and turns to the (rather dark) story, I ended up not really knowing who was right or wrong. Although Fire Emblem has always been fantasy, I feel they must have been overly influenced by Game Of Thrones this time around, just in terms of the rival factions etc. There is so much plot - probably too much - and loads of pointless fighting between those who should be allies. The exploration and teaching is another thing I don't know what to think about, as it is another layer of complication, but undoubtedly makes the experience richer. Even now, I still feel a genuine bond with Dorothea, Bernadetta, Petra... it actually feels weird tutoring a rival class. It's one thing for a game to have a gripping story, but I don't think I've ever felt so involved before. On balance, I probably prefer the old class system, with less choice (get to level 20, then choose between two classes to advance to). I was disappointed there wasn't a male Sage class - in fact, the men seemed to have less choice in general - they can't be Falco Knights, yet women can be Falco Knights and Wyvern Lords. Is there actually a class the women can't be? Brawler/Grappler, I think, but that's probably because Nintendo didn't want to make the equivalent outfits. Overall, Fire Emblem: Three Houses is a really stunning experience, the storyline of which might even be remembered along the lines of, say, Final Fantasy VII. I don't know if I'll fondly look back on it as one of my favourites, but I was certainly impressed.