I really should play Binding and Blazing Blade sometime soon to get personal connections with some of these characters…
But for now, a few of these units at least have impressive skills that it would be a shame not summon for them.
For instance: Lyn (despite her market saturation) has an impressive weapon in the Deep-Blue Bow, which gives her insane stats alongside Sturdy Impact.
Roy’s friend Wolt also has a special “win more” weapon in the Big-Catch Bow that buffs him when his opponent is weakened. Plus his Brazen Attack/Speed 4 is too good for any mortal to possess.
Ursula and Lilina stand out less because I’m not a huge dagger fan, even though Ursula’s Scallop Blade has the same “win more” effect.
So Lyn and Wolt are at the top of my list.
Which is good because one of them decided to give me a break after multiple disappointments trying to summon Laevatein.
Look at this good +Attack archer boi.
I appreciate you helping me save orbs, so we’ll see how I can put you to work.
In the meantime there’s no better way to recoup those orbs than a good old Paralogue.
Paralogue 36 — Summer Refreshes
This paralogue follows right on the last paralogue’s heels. Anna has recovered from the psychosomatic illness that resulted from hiding her mercantile side and decides to…
Just kind of sell things again. Regardless of what the nobility thinks.
I guess that’s character development?
It doesn’t seem to matter however, as the Order of Heroes arrives at the beach to find all the heroes in fancy swimsuits:
Being “magically” forced to buy skimpy outfits seems like it would be a major plot point, but it’s thrown away by the second map because Lilina and Wolt just talk about protecting each other for the sake of Roy.
Once the summer heroes are all beaten down, it’s revealed that Anna was the one convincing heroes to buy new swimsuits.
Just not our version of Anna.
Thus, foiled again, our Anna vows to return next year with an even crazier scheme to sell more things.
The fact that this little story drops its most interesting element is pretty disappointing. Kind of makes this experience one of the weaker paralogues overall.
But at least it gives us one of the most unintentionally real things that has ever been written down in a gotcha game.
I’m still upset that we were lied to and given another summer banner. Intelligent Systems be wasting our orbs all over the place!
Sure, thinking we wouldn’t have another banner was entirely speculation.
And I didn’t have to waste a lot of orbs to get Wolt.
But that doesn’t mean I’m not allowed to be upset! You can make it up to me by helping me get Laevatein, Intelligent Systems.
I’ll be expecting her.
Anyway though, let me know what you think about these new summer units. I’m a little salty if it wasn’t obvious, but I imagine some of you are very excited to see a few of these characters come around again.
Pretty sure this is the last blog thing I’ll have to worry about this week, so wish me luck on jumping back into my novel.
Gold, Silver and Crystal started the trend of different versions having unique legendaries that changed details about an overall identical story (though Yellow technically led the way by making an anime-inspired version of Red/Blue/Green).
Arguably the first major game-to-game change was the Magma/Aqua split in Ruby and Sapphire, even if they were just different villains in the same circumstances.
It wouldn’t be until Emerald version that they truly stood out as different entities.
This new Rock-type is essentially a mobile ball of coal with a lamp that must have been a godsend during the Galar Industrial Revolution. It’s new Steam Engine ability increases the Pokémon’s speed when hit by Fire or Water-type moves.
Gigantamaxing Pokémon are extra exclusive variants of Dynamaxed Pokémon that trainers can sometimes find during Max Raid Battles.
They look different, have better stats and a more powerful “G-Max Move.”
Like… Is this something we’ll have to breed onto our Pokémon if we want competitive Gigantamaxing over Dynamaxing?
I don’t know, man. The official website only has so much information, so I can’t fully speak to the merits of this mechanic.
All I can say is I’m unfortunately still not into it.
And that’s that, ladies and gentlemen. New Pokémon information to salivate over.
While I’m not enamored by Gigantamaxing and the latest crop of monsters are more on the weird side, I’m still plenty excited overall. Especially by the prospect of having more unique trainers to meet on each journey through Galar!
So let me know what you think of this latest trailer.
While you do that, I’m going to make use of this closure and go back to sleep.
Far From Home is steeped in Tony Stark, using the grief Spider-Man feels literally seeing his face in memorials everywhere to bridge us into the future. I was worried about the studio’s ability to hold my interest following its magnum opus, but that won’t be a problem if all upcoming MCU films are as fun and smart as this.
Unlike most of the MCU films I review, the stuff I love about Far From Home leans heavily into spoilers, so I’m going to hide specifics under a read more.
If you haven’t seen the movie yet, just know I highly recommend it.
“ANOTHER Legendary sword cavalier?” I thought, lamenting the fact that Eliwood would be lost in a sea of Eirikas and Hríds.
Swords in general are a very overplayed weapon type in the Legendary Hero listings. Though that’s a symptom of many main characters being cool sword bois.
Yet Eliwood stands out due to his insane buffing potential.
The gimmick of his skill set is granting one ally +6 Attack and Defense if (for example) Ninian is also deployed, then doubling that buff through his weapon’s Bonus Doubler effect.
Those buffs are applied to the ally with the highest attack stat on his team, which is clearly intended to be Eliwood thanks to Death Blow 4. But I could just as easily see a team being built up so a specific unit can get the +12 stats.
Congratulations Intelligent Systems, you made me care at least a little about a hero I figured I would completely pass on.
Unfortunately, only one other hero on his banner truly entices me despite it including:
I’ve been enjoying it a lot more than I expected to, and I considered writing about its interesting treatment of Fates characters in a blog post yesterday if I hadn’t spent all afternoon cleaning the house.
So hey, I’ll probably have that coming soon. Look forward to it.
In the meantime, let me know what you think of Eliwood down in the comments!
Some of these are far better out of context. Trust me.
One thing I don’t fully understand about the collection is how nonsensically ordered it is. Though the individual comics are segmented by focusing on different Pokémon, they don’t proceed through the book in number or alphabetical order.
It seems entirely random, and that’s compounded by the fact that two-part comics can appear pages apart.
There’s a particular comic about Woobat and Yamask that’s referenced more than 50 pages later and has a disclaimer telling readers to go back.
Why not just order the pages to avoid that kind of problem if there’s no sensible ordering scheme in the book?
Though there’s a much more important question buried in these pages.
Why is Throh the only Pokémon with a two-part comic in which he is the named focus on both parts?
The. Only. One.
Why Throh of all Pokémon?
Like I’m glad the collection has cool tidbits and quizzes on the sides of each page where I can learn things…
But I’m not sure I can forgive Santa Harukaze for making me feel this tumultuous about Throh.
So, in summary:
Is it worth reading through every Pokémon Black & White Pocket Comic in an afternoon?
Honestly… Not really.
The world of Unova comics has highs are pretty high, but the lows are very, very low. So much so that I don’t think I’d recommend reading through all of them except that you can only find the true gems that way.
I suppose I’d still recommend the book as something of a coffee table read to put out if you have Pokémon-loving guests. But as a Pokémon fan, I’m not sure I would buy the Kalos edition after this one.
That’s a real downer note to end a Pokémon-related post, so here’s a picture of Alyson ruining my attempt to get a Featured Image.
When the roguelike rhythm-based dungeon crawler was released by Vancouver game studio Brace Yourself Games in 2015, it got a lot of good press for being a unique Indie game that blended disparate genres seamlessly.
I’m not sure why I didn’t try Crypt, so I’ll just say I assumed a lack of rhythm as a suburban white boy.
I showed my sister the #CadenceOfHyrule trailer and she’s begging me to buy it as both a musician and a Zelda fan, but when I looked it turns out the original @NecroDancerGame is on sale for four bucks?
Cadence is a fascinating beast in concept. Nintendo let an Independent studio with a bizarre gameplay hook handle one of their most popular franchises. Hopefully it succeeds and encourages more experimentation!
There’s a good chance it will, because if Zelda is known for anything, it’s solid music. Why not use it in a rhythm-action game?
That’s where Cadence shines brightest: Homaging and using elements from Zelda’s history.
The game’s story is as simple a vehicle as they come. Cadence (the hero from Crypt of the NecroDancer) is transported to Hyrule and must help defeat the wizard Octavio before he puts the world to sleep with musical magic.
That framework is all you need to just run into a world of classic Zelda locations with a new rhythmic twist:
In the 20 hours it took me to beat the final boss and collect every item, I never quite acclimated to running into enemies and avoiding telegraphed attacks on-beat.
There’s only one screen that really requires an expertise in the mechanics, but I’m not sure I’m excited to go back to the original Crypt having heard it’s much harder.
Now to be fair, I like the use of different weapons with different patterns, from three-square wide broadsword slashes to two-square long spear stabs — especially for unique weapons like Zelda’s rapier.
Speaking of, how amazing is it that this is a Legend of Zelda game where you can play a Smash Bros.-inspired Zelda, who utilizes Din’s Fire and Nayru’s Love, for the entire runtime?
Some items like the bow are also solid, but others like the Rito Feather are incredibly underwhelming. Also, why not use the Zelda-staple Roc’s Cape?
But to be completely honest, those complaints are somewhat negligible.
After all, Cadence of Hyrule is a two-player co-operative game.
Being able to fully complete a game with my sister, who is both a musician and a Zelda fan, is an experience I don’t get very often.
And that, alongside the incredible attention to detail, makes Cadence of Hyrule an experience I’ll not soon forget.
Even if I’m still iffy about Crypt of the NecroDancer.
The premise was simple: Throw a bunch of computers onto a tournament bracket and watch them fight. Alpharad and a few friends commentated the matches, providing insights into actual competitive strategies and general comedy.
It was fun and apparently so popular that he would have been a fool not to do more.
However, the CPU tournaments were clearly Alpharad’s bread and butter.
Over time they grew into more than just a showcase of computer intelligence. Jokes about certain fighters repeated to the point of giving them distinct personalities. Then came clever brand integrations by having his video sponsors “sponsor” the winners of previous tournaments like they were sport stars proving themselves.
Then the series grew further. Original characters were added via Mii Fighters that developed entire plot threads cleverly delivered by commentators on the spot.
I’m not sure how much was pre-planned or improvised based on genuine tournament results, but either way it was impressive to see a cohesive narrative emerge that culminated in an “Endgame” duel between light and dark.
In the lore, two years had passed. Thus, much of the first episode was spent doling out exposition about what had changed — from new Mii Fighters to the off-screen reigns of joke characters like Rosalina.
What stood out most about this structured direction is how much more planning and effort clearly went into the season’s pre-production. Everything down to anime-inspired intros that are just cringe enough to be great.
Whereas the first era of the CPUCS emerged from completely different roots and had to develop into something more, the second era is immediately running with the aftermath and presenting more foreshadowing for underlying story bits.
Yet I felt like this guy when I discovered that the blog not only exists, but has been used since May to create a more lived-in environment:
I too am now a big fan of Agent Naomi.
For what many would write off as a silly YouTube series about Smash Ultimate where cashing in is easy because no human interactions are needed for gameplay, this is an awesome bit of committed world building.
It shows how much Alpharad genuinely cares, and I can respect the hell out of that.
So if I haven’t convinced you yet, go watch the CPUCS.
I swear it’s more than just your average Smash Bros. series if you stick by it.
Thus Laevatein is really the only character I’d say I’m very interested in summoning. She’s my favorite Book II character, has cute artwork and packs a great 1-2 punch against other mages with Mirror Impact.
Seriously Intelligent Systems? +6 Attack, +10 Resistance and no counterattacks?
You can’t just make these characters that broken.
I used the Paralogue orbs to get a few extra shots at her, but I haven’t pulled anything special and I’m not going to rush it.
Once again we cut away from dramatic story progression to bring you the latest in Anna’s attempts to make money off of some softcore pornography.
Or… Do we?
Anna is feeling self-reflective this year and promises not to do anything that can give her a bad reputation at risk of being fired by the royal family.
Which means the entire Paralogue is going to be focused on trying to avoid money-making schemes, isn’t it?
Well to be fair the first two battles completely disregard this plot point and focus on the reunion of the Múspell sisters.
Then the reunion of Ylgr (future Tempest Trials reward) and Helbindi.
They’re both cute interactions. But that doesn’t stop them from being pure filler in an admittedly great dusk luau-themed environment.
Don’t worry, though. We return to the exploits of Anna soon after.
By which I mean Anna buckles under the pressure of trying to repress her desire for cash and falls ill. She passes out on the beach, leading to the Order of Heroes realizing just how integral money is to her character.
To a ridiculous degree.
So that’s Fire Emblem Heroes’ 2019 summer banner. Probably the only one we’re getting this year.
I’m a little lukewarm because of my orb stinginess, but I will absolutely try to building my Laevatein squad.
Let me know what you think of the banner down in the comments! How does it compare to previous summer banners? Do you agree that Laegjarn’s arm looks fucked up?
Seriously, do you? I need to know that I’m not alone here.
Well-deserved acclaim at that. This is a title with some incredible pixel art design, a treasure trove of content and enough charm to reduce your Pikachu’s attack by six stages — all made by one person, ConcernedApe.
I bought the game alongside my friend Samantha, who was one of my close friends to recommend it years ago when I had no time to join the fad.
We’ve gone through cycles of playing different co-operative games together in the past. From brief stints with Don’t Starve Together to an innocuous MMORPG called Aura Kingdom, as well as hundreds of hours invested in Terraria just a few summers before she moved away.
Unfortunately she’s been a little more busy with work so far this summer, and we haven’t gotten the chance to play a lot. But I started my own single-player file to learn the basics so I wouldn’t be a complete disgrace.
I fell into the game hard. I’ve been up playing until 3:00 a.m. a few more times in the last week than I’d care to admit.
Originally I intended to write a review of the game for my blog to justify all the hours I’ve poured in. But I’m three years late to the party and everything I could say has already been said.
Plus it would more or less just be hundreds of words gushing about what a mastahpiece it is, and that can’t be very exciting for a three-year-old game.
You can honestly judge for yourself based solely on the trailer:
However, something strange happened with this game.
Even though I resigned myself not to write a review, a totally different craving bore its way out of my subconscious mind after watching my single-player character get married to my Stardew love, Emily.
There was a particular string of events and cutscenes leading up to the marriage that I thought flowed together like an unintentionally beautiful story…
And I couldn’t stop thinking about it.
My blood ached with the desire to show my adoration for the game by doing what I do best: Writing.
The other day I announce my intention to ruin my credibility by writing a Stardew Valley fanfiction, totally abandoning my original book for an afternoon to use digital ink on flourishing personal video game experiences instead.
I’ve never played a DQ game or Banjo-Kazooie, but I know plenty of people who love those series and I’m happy to see them so happy.
Especially given the love and attention both fighters are getting. The Hero has multiple alternate costumes and a final smash featuring different protagonists from that series, Grant Kirkhope was involved in doing the music for Banjo…
Masahiro Sakurai truly is the king of reviving Nintendo history, and looping in Rare was a great way to include a fighter with die-hard fans who fits in the roster far better than Minecraft Steve or Master Chief.
Look at how hype the Donkey Kong characters are for Banjo and Kazooie
Look I played the first couple Olympic crossover games with my sister and they were decent minigame collections.
But the fact that this series is still going astounds me.
Some of you would probably prefer I put Cadence of Hyrule in this major slot since it looks cool and is only $25 bucks, which definitely entices me to buy the game when it drops this Thursday in spite of never playing Crypt of the Necrodancer.
Breath of the Wild is getting a direct sequel, bringing it in-line with Majora’s Mask and the Wind Waker series. A sequel where Link and Zelda are going to be traveling the ravaged Hyrule together and discover some demented shit.
The trailer was just an “in development” teaser, but they sure did succeed in making it emotionally provocative. I’m curious to find out more… Though a lot of that is based on hype from my friends’ speculations.
Which means I guess I have to go finish Breath of the Wild.
Damn you, Nintendo. Quit monopolizing my time when you’re about to monopolize my time with all these new games!
Those were the big ticket items out of this E3 Direct for me, but there were a lot of smaller things that piqued my interest too.