Thursday, 7 November 2013

Best Of The Console:NDS

Its time to close out the NDS era for me. I tend to keep my consoles alive for a bit, and as you can see, I only closed off my PS2 in 2012, WAY past its death date. The 3DS has been out for quite awhile now, and I recently just bought it. With the absence of new games for the NDS, its safe to assume that the console is already dead, and that its time to move on to the 3DS. "Pokemon X" review coming soon, I've already dumped over 70 hours into the game since release date...yes, I bought it day one along with my 3DS, so you now you know when I bought my 3DS!

Alright then, its time to bid farewell to the NDS, with my top 6 favorite games/series, here they all are (Yes, 6, not 5, because I can't choose 5 from these 6 awesome titles)! Of course, just with my PS2 list, this is mostly my opinion on which games entertained me the most, score plays a factor, but its not the DECIDING factor.

Name: Phoenix Wright series (Until Apollo Justice)
From: Capcom

Now I have been loathing Capcom as of late, but this was definitely one of the best f**king things they have done for video games. The "Phoenix Wright" series was simply one of the best interactive adventures out for the NDS, with plenty of mind f**king cases and great characters. With mind blowing music and excellent courtroom battles, "Phoenix Wright" was THE game to play for me whenever I wanted to feel as hype as a hyena.

For a game that pan over the course of 5 games with 2 spin-offs, you can already tell that this is an amazing series. With each and every game having their own share of crazy cases and characters, adding up all the games will give us an undeniably insane amount of entertainment. You'd have to scrounge entire areas for evidence, speak to everyone for clues, all for the great battle of truth in the court, which is hype as f**k, with the great old man judge sitting in the center (he's probably 90 years old by now).

There were so many games, so many characters (yes, even the Miles Edgeworth games were amazing, f**king Capcom didn't localize the second one though), its hard to find a favorite game in the series. The first one started the epic rebuttal between Edgeworth and Wright. The second had Karma's daughter, Pearl Fey and Matt Engarde. The 3rd one had easily the saddest end story, it introduced Iris and Godot. Apollo Justice has Gavin, whom was badass enough to be a prosecutor and rock star at 17.

Name: Etrian Odyssey series (Until 3)
From: Atlus

Oh Atlus, you made me love you even more. What, making the "SMT" series wasn't badass enough for you? You'd have to make me go completely bonkers over another one of your game franchises? Oh Atlus, you devil. "Etrian Odyssey" was one of the games I followed from the start for the NDS. I played the first one upon its release, I f**king loved it, though the entire game made me rage a lot. It made me rage, but I loved it, and its not a masochist thing, but that's the point of the damn game.

The series made me rage, many times. You can get ambushed by a normal enemy squad, get raped, then have a FOE hit you from the back. The FOE binds your entire party, preventing any sort of escape, then proceeds to kill you. Then you realized you have been exploring 3 floors straight, and haven't saved since. Let the raging begin. The core of these games is to be super challenging, and that's what it is. You need wit, you need patience, you need to get stronger. The motivation to become stronger, create your own party, making weird stories with these characters yourself....its all part of the experience.

You'd have a ton of characters to choose from, and creating the ultimate party is one of the things to have you succeed in this game. Sure, any party is viable as long as you have a medic, you can even run 3 protectors or 3 survivalists (which is pretty viable, mind you). They introduce new classes with each new release,and my favorite one in the series, "Etrian Odyssey 3", even overhauled the entire group of available classes. With the sea battles and awesome labyrinth...its no doubt my favorite one of the series.

Name: Pokemon Black & White/Black & White 2
From: Game Freak

No Nintendo handheld console's top list is complete without its poster franchise, "Pokemon", and fortunately, the NDS has seen its share of great "Pokemon" games. However, none fueled me the way that the "Black & White" series. It pretty much made me relive my days as a Pokemon master, making me feel like a kid again, back when I got my very own Gameboy, playing the shit out of "Pokemon Blue". For once in a very long time, I felt like catching them all again.

"Black & White" was the first game in many to finally have an entire region of new Pokemon to itself. Many iterations before "Black & White" old Pokemon mixed in their region, "Black & White" made damn sure that its region was filled with only NEW Pokemon EXCLUSIVE to Gen 5 at the time...until post game of course. This was easily its best selling point, as I could not wait to see what new Pokemon awaited me at each new area, and while some might argue that Gen 5's Pokemon designs were the worst, I beg to differ. I thought Gen 2 & 4 had worse designs, honestly.

The new visuals, the new Pokemon....everything was just too good. And as if it wasn't enough, Game Freak had the awesome idea of changing up the standard Pokemon story. Though the goal was still to be the best, the involvement of Team Plasma in the plot made for some impressive twists and turns that old Pokemon games never managed to pull off. I mean, a Team leader as a final boss instead of the Elite four champion? Awesome! What's more, they relived the experience and refined it further in "Black & White 2", making it an even more engrossing experience which I dumped 90 hours into, even more than the original "Black & White"!

Name: Nine Hours Nine Persons Nine doors
From: Chunsoft

Never in my life would I ever thought that I would play a game with a name like "999"...but I was so glad that I did. Developed by a company that almost no one knew about, Chunsoft made a masterpiece of a game when they finished "999". Being an interactive visual novel experience with a mind f**king story, amazing characters, multiple endings and intriguing puzzles, "999" is an excellent game that really shouldn't be missed as long as you own an NDS. 

"999" simply made me feel so f**king alive, that's what it was. Few games can ever make me feel this way unless the story is so thought provoking and packed with emotion to the very brim. Make no mistake, the story of "999" alone is already a thrill ride, but many moments made me almost jerk a tear, and that's saying a lot. Being a visual novel game, there were many endings, and as you would've guessed, most were bad, except for the true ending. And how can you get the true end? By getting bad ends first, genius right?

By solving puzzles in rooms behind numbered doors you proceed deeper to find the door numbered 9. Because of an implemented system by the villain, only certain combination of people can enter certain doors, and before entering each one, your mind will race. Who will betray me on the other side? Which of the characters that I like that aren't going with me will die? We will never f**king know until we make it true, and that's just part of the awesomeness. The puzzles behind each door are interesting as well, and while its true that the story is the main kicker here, these puzzles are also a ton of fun with a lot of variety.

Name: Shin Megami Tensei:Devil Survivor/Devil Survivor 2
From: Atlus

I've come to a conclusion that I simply cannot do without "SMT" games in my life. The 2 biggest offenders are "Persona" and the champions of the NDS, the "Devil Survivor" series. Taking place in modern Japan? Check. World ending in 7 days? Check. High school student esque main characters and other awesome supporting characters? F**king check. There's really nothing to hate here, and while thee game has its good share of fun, annoying or badass characters, its really not a good thing when your game doesn't have character variety, no?

First off, the setting of these 2 games are already picture perfect. Throw in the well renowned demon fusion system, a simple, effective yet in depth battle system with the standard "SMT" elements of old, and you get a triple "A" NDS title. The games are full of visual flair, character development, amazing battles and addictive demon collecting. The story about the world ending in 7 days and the cast desperately trying to stop it never gets old.

Plus, the game is completely brutal towards your actions. Your time is limited, and so is the lifespan of the characters you know. Make wrong decisions and people WILL die. If you see multiple events on the overworld map, its highly likely that the game is throwing you a decision which will decide the course of the game. Failing to save characters WILL left them dead for the entire game, and this decisions will really put a lot of thought in your actions. Though this is made a lot simpler in "Devil Survivor 2". So which game do I prefer? I like both equally actually, though "Devil Survivor" has the better story and "Devil Survivor 2" has better characters.

Name: The World Ends With You
From: Square Enix

This is a no brainer, really. It doesn't take a genius to know that I love this game. In fact, its still my favorite game up to this day, no game has topped the amount of fun I've had or the amount of emotion I've felt while playing this game. There's just absolutely too much to love, ranging from the surreal story, the realistic characters, the plot twists, the villains, the monster designs, the city of Shibuya....everything man. This game still gives me the feels, even today.

The world ends in 7 days. Seem familiar? Its roughly the same concept as "Devil Survivor", but I ain't complaining. "The World Ends With You" gives you a pretty sizable city to run around in, despite most of it being closed off during certain parts of the game due to the interference of the Reapers. You get to live like a Shibuya city boy. Buy clothes, shop for trinkets, get on and so forth. But that's just the icing on top of the cake, the fashion trends and stuff. Combat is a blast, making full use of the NDS touch screen, it felt more interactive than most NDS games up to date.

You swipe your stylus around depending on the pins you have equipped, performing various attack types and patterns. To top it off, you have to control the D-pad too to lead your partner into fighting as well, making combat something difficult to master, but once you do though, its satisfying. There are a great variety of enemies and pins, the story also provides its own share of mind f**ks and tear jerkers, so there's a lot to like.

And these are my top games for the NDS. There's a lot to like really, but to me, I'll have the most memories of these games when somebody talks to me about the NDS. Brace yourselves, 3DS games are finally making their debut on my little blog space.