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Monthly Archives: August 2012

Over the last little bit of the summer I decided to see if I could play through some retro games that I’ve never had the chance to play before. Games that either I didn’t own the system (console) to play on or even just games that I never cared for or were too difficult to keep me going. Currently, I’m working my way through Final Fantasy as I never owned a NES (my first console was a PlayStation) and I have never been that big into RPGs.

So why would I play an RPG game if I’ve never really enjoyed playing them? Well, part of the reason is I’m bored and I need to keep my mind busy and working on something and trying something new is excellent for that. Plus, I have a brother who is crazy about RPGs and I wanted to beat him to playing the first Final Fantasy (he beat it shortly after I started 😦 ).

So after a very rocky starting (failed to equipped my weapons or armour LOL) I finally got a good save where I wasn’t dying every second battle :). This is my current team: Ahab (fighter), Vij (red mage), Tisq (black-belt), and Ofeb (thief). I should note that I made up all the names (except Ahab => Moby Dick reference) and that’s mostly because the game only allows for the names to be four letter long and since my name is five, it got shafted. Of course I’m playing it on an emulator (JNES) since I lack the time to go on a wild goose chase to find a working NES and reasonably priced Final Fantasy cartridge.

My Team in Final Fantasy I

In playing this game, I’ve come to realize a couple of things about the gaming industry. This game, whether you deem it as a flaw or not, doesn’t really tell you anything. Granted, I don’t own the manual, which as I understand it actually tells you about the spells and what they do which would be mighty helpful :). Regardless, the game makes no attempt to actually tell you how to play or really teach you too much about how to succeed. At the end of the day, you actually have to put in the effort to play and figure some stuff out. For instance, I didn’t even realize that I never equipped my weapons or armour until I actually tell the game to. Putting the stuff in the guy’s inventory isn’t enough and you have to actually equip it. Although probably not the best example, as I may just be a huge dunce at RPGs (I will admit to it) it wasn’t so obvious to me. Other things, such as getting poisoned and realizing you’re still poisoned after you healed up at the inn. How was I supposed to know that I have to use a Pure potion to get rid of the poison? Again, this doesn’t make the game bad, just a little frustrating in the beginning. Though I do feel that the game could be a touch more friendlier in pointing me in the right direction sometimes. But then I get thinking that this is exactly what Egoraptor was talking about in his Sequelitis video.

If you haven’t seen it, you should. Egoraptor goes into great detail about why the games are so different from today’s generation to the NES/SNES generation. He primarily talks about how games teach the player how to actually play the game. I won’t go repeating what he said, cause he said it so well already…HERE. So in essence, Final Fantasy to me at least is actually fairly good at teaching me while playing or, as Egoraptor calls it, Final Fantasy has solid conveyance. I learned most of the game through actually playing rather than googling FAQs or guides (which I hate doing and consider it just a touch below cheats). Of course, as I mentioned before, there are a few spots where they could improve on the conveyance in my opinion. But some of it may be just that I’m a newb at RPGs, which I can totally see ;).

Anyways, I hoped you enjoyed this post and I hope you take a look at Egoraptor’s Sequelitis videos (unfortunately he only made three 😦 ) and maybe let me know what you think. Have you ever been in the same situation? Or have you even encountered a game where you had no idea what to do? If so, give me a shout. I’d love to see what other people think.

Oh and as usual, here is my song for the week ==> The Strokes – What Ever Happened

-AlphaRed

Been a few months since I last posted so I thought I’d have a go at it.

Since May I’ve finished my spring/summer semester at university, passing all my courses (thankfully!) and was even able to find accomodations for the fall semester. Turns out that finding a room/apartment for four months is nearly impossible as every single landlord wants at the minimum eight months, which I completely understand. Especially given that most students that they rent out to only need the eight or 12 months. I, on the otherhand, am only at the university for the fall semesters and I head back home to my co-op placement/job. So an eight month lease/rent is of no use to me.

I also started digging into more C programming during that time. I even got super confident and tried my hand at modding the Quake 3 engine. Only to find that it’s not as easy as I thought, so I went back to square one. Started learning the SDL API so that I could start cranking out some graphical games, even if they are only 2D to begin with. Built a crappy Tic-Tac-Toe game, I say crappy because it had some major flaws to the program if you knew how to exploit it. I keep saying that I’d have to rewrite it to fix all the problems but I’m a lazy programmer and it kinda scares me to have to rewrite it all. Currently, I’ve kept at the SDL and C programming and I’m writing my own blackjack game, though it isn’t turning out exactly how I’d like it to. I can say for a fact, that I’ve learned plenty from writing both these programs and realize that I’m only gonna learn more.

Anyways, I think I’m done for now. I’ll try and post sometime soon (end of week maybe?) but until then I’ll leave you with a song that has grown on me over the past few months…

Interpol – NYC
-AlphaRed