Ben's Week In Review: August 9
A cool night pleasantly interrupted by various spikes of heat...generated on the inside, and no, I won't elaborate. ;)
Should we be focusing more on FFXIII's gameplay?
This past week, we dealt with the misinformation that said the "latest" media for Final Fantasy XIII represented a significant step backwards from what we saw earlier. But we soon found a clarification that although that media was only recently released to the Japanese public in DVD form, it's in fact almost a year old; it came from the Tokyo Game Show 2008. Since then, we've seen other screenshots and full-motion video that proves how beautiful this game will be...but how will that surprise anyone? I think we really need to focus on that fresh, dynamic gameplay that is bound to turn a few heads. Lest we forget, Square-Enix really changed things up with FFXII, and based on everything I've read concerning the combat in FFXIII, it seems we'll get yet another wholly original mechanic. Every time I see an article about FFXIII, it seems to focus entirely on the graphics, and I think we're really missing the bigger picture, here.
First of all, we know that Square-Enix often sets a new benchmark in terms of visuals when the newest FF releases in any given generation. But maybe this time around, we'll already have benchmarks established by the likes of Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, God of War III, and Gran Turismo 5; hence, we journalists should really examine the gameplay. It'll be pretty; no doubt. But I wanna know how it's going to feel when I sit there with a controller in my hands. Don't you?
Madden Arcade? Hmm...I just might do that
EA just announced Madden Arcade, and although the football purists will scoff at it, I'm becoming easier to please in my old age. There was a time when I wanted simulated everything if I ever decided to play a sports game, and while that remains true in terms of racing (GT is the only franchise for me), it has changed drastically for other sports. I found myself playing that demo for The Bigs 2 more than a few times (although I won't spend $60 on it), and just today, I popped in NHL '94 on my SNES. Why? So I could go through the playoffs with Boston and win all the games (6-1, 6-1, 7-1, and 11-0). There isn't anything even remotely realistic about it; it only took about an hour and a half to do, and there was no real challenge in terms of control mechanics. But so what? I'm really liking the idea of an arcade version of Madden; maybe EA can do it better than Midway, who are responsible for the mediocre Blitz titles. I kinda liked NFL Street but the lack of a tournament mode really hurt that game, if I remember correctly.
I still want to play the best of the best when it comes to all games. I still want the most realistic and atmospheric titles out there. But these days, when it comes to sports...eh, just give me back 3D Baseball, or something.
Personal gaming update
Well, I didn't get Resident Evil 5 for my birthday, but I got something better, anyway. I have been missing the mats for my car since I got it, and after doing some research, I found out some weird crap: not only are they immensely expensive (for freakin' mats), but it seems that most used M-class Infinitis come without the mats because the owners keep them as mementos of owning the car. They're also one of the most stolen mats (who the fu** steals mats?). I guess the reason is because, like the seats, they have the Infiniti emblem on them, and furthermore, they're very thick and custom-fit. There's one whole piece for the rear that actually covers the bump in the middle, too; my parents went to great lengths to find them. But they totally tie the car together and it's definitely a lot quieter now.
So I might just go buy RE5. But I'll have Madden NFL 10 to review and I'll need to spend time with that, and then directly afterward, there's Batman: Arkham Asylum, which I'm looking forward to. In the meantime, I continue to play FFX sporadically, and I started up a new game of Baldurs Gate: Dark Alliance, too. Just because. It's good hack 'n slash fun. :)
8/8/2009 Ben Dutka