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One of Those Backlog Posts

On 02/02/2013 at 02:39 PM by Travis Hawks

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Thanks to the relatively slow season we’re having with game releases, I’ve been able to start playing a few games from the ol’ backlog.  It’s been pretty enjoyable so far, just enjoying these games that have been hanging around on my shelves (virtual and physical) for a while.  Here’s a quick run-down of what I’ve been up to.



After hearing how great this game was for quite a while and picking it up for half price some time ago, I was finally able to dig in and give it a go.  I am a huge fan of the narrator and the visual style.  Other than that, though I wasn’t too thrilled.  Mainly, I didn’t enjoy the combat enough to keep playing and re-playing the levels that were far from a cake-walk. There’s nothing strictly wrong with the combat mechanics, I just found them to be pretty boring and unsatisfying.  It’s too bad because the story and world is interesting enough that I’d like to see how it all turns out.  It’s OK, though.  I don’t want to spend a lot of time doing something I don’t enjoy in my spare time.   Experiencing the game’s narrator made everything worthwhile that I have done so far.  I’m happy I played what I did.


Monster Tale

I like so-called metroidvania games, but I normally have some trouble staying interested.  Monster Tale found a way to fix my problem that I bet plenty of people hate.  Once you get a new ability or key, the map plops down a flashing orb to show you where you are supposed to go next.  A baby mode I can get behind!

Other than that accommodation for teh kiddiez, Monster Tale can be pretty damn tough.  The bulk of the first part of the game isn’t too difficult, the exceptions being the first couple of boss fights.  As you proceed, though, just walking through the levels gets to be fairly dicey and I had to repeat a lot of segments multiple times.  Not to mention that the boss battles get even more difficult.

I’ve only got the slightest bit remaining to wrap it up, but I’m taking a break.  I was having to repeat several of the game’s final gauntlet o’ enemies sections so many times that I got bored with them and needed to do something more relaxing and less stressful.  I have every intention of popping the cartridge back in from time to time until I complete this final section.

Oh, and I need to gripe about not being able to interrupt the melee combo animation to save yourself from an incoming projectile or attack.  This was the biggest problem I had with Henry Hatsworth (also by Monster Tale developer Dream Rift) and is the reason I quit playing that game.  This unstoppable combo isn’t as big of an issue as it was in Henry Hatsworth, but it’s still irritating. 


Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light

If there’s one thing my backlog has plenty of, it’s Final Fantasy games.  This was made even worse by the Square-Enix shop’s holiday sale.  I picked up three games (all Final Fantasy related) that have been on my to-buy list forever.  The first of these I decided to tackle (in hopes that it was short) was The 4 Heroes of Light. 

I’ve just now completed the classic Final Fantasy prelude section, but I think I’ve got a good sense of the game’s battle system and what I’m in for.  The mechanics are a little strange, and I can imagine a bit off-putting for some.  The first boss encounter really forced me to figure out the best way to plan out my actions when the A.I. determines which enemies get hit and which allies get cured.  It’s weird, but I think I like it if for no other reason than it’s different than most systems out there. 

Also, this is just the sort of laid back experience I needed after squeezing my DS to a pulp playing some of those Monster Tale bosses. 


Hopefully I can wrap up Monster Tale and The 4 Heroes of Light fairly soon.  I’ve got the Etrian Odyssey IV demo on my calendar and most likely some sort of games to play for review for PixlBit too.  It’s been fun just messing around with these games instead of trying to be more methodical and critical as I play since I’ve been playing a ton of games for review lately. 

Do you have any opinions on these three games?  Am I a giant idiot for not loving Bastion?  Are you as psyched for EO IV as I am?  LMK,KTHXBAI,YOLO,LYLAS



Joaquim Mira Media Manager

02/02/2013 at 10:45 PM

I will have to get back on Bastion one of these days. As for the other 2 games I have some interest, but I've stopped being a collector ever since I started living on my own which means I can't just buy them and decide to not touch them for a long time LOL.

Travis Hawks Senior Editor

02/03/2013 at 02:35 PM

I definitely don't consider myself a collector.... just an idiot without enough self control to pass up a "good deal."

Super Step

02/25/2013 at 10:16 PM

I haven't been able to play even what are now most people's back log games, due to college keeping me from being able to justify the expense of last gen consoles (re: last gaming thing I own aside from Android is a DS, speaking of which I need to start getting used games for it, so I have something to talk about besides classic games lol)

Hopefully, I can get enough of a cash flow this year to adopt a WiiU or PS4, or most likely, as long as it doesn't have that used games BS, whatever Microsoft's newest is.

Travis Hawks Senior Editor

03/01/2013 at 08:19 PM

I missed a TON of stuff while I was in college.  I am still trying to go back and hit some of the highlights.  Sadly, for me this is PlayStation 1.  

Super Step

03/02/2013 at 10:23 PM

My older brother was the one who had PS1 growing up, so I did play it, but I probably missed out on a lot, too. N64 was the first console I owned though, so I didn't miss much there.

Glad to hear I'm not the only one that missed out on games while going to college!


03/02/2013 at 10:30 PM

I love Bastion. I know what you mean about the combat. I find it to be enjoyable and the narrator cracks me up with all his little sayings. My backlog is utterly ridiculous. Well over 100 games probably lol. Embarassed

Travis Hawks Senior Editor

03/03/2013 at 01:31 PM

Yeah, sometimes combat like that grabs you, and sometimes it doesn't.  I wish I could stick it out to get more of the story, but I couldn't.


03/03/2013 at 11:49 AM

I go out of my way to play different games every evening. That way I make some progress little by little on each one. Still doesn't mean I finish them all,but I enjoy trying. They do tend to pile up on me. I'm working on Halo 4,Assassins Creed 3,Borderlands 2,and COD:Black Ops 2 all at the same time. Guess an overabundance of great games is a good thing,though.

Travis Hawks Senior Editor

03/03/2013 at 01:31 PM

That's a good system.  I would probably mess it up and never finish anything, though.  I have a one-track mind, I guess.


03/04/2013 at 09:05 AM

I enjoyed my time with Heroes of Light. I spent about 20 hours with the game. It is definitely a throwback title, like an alternate universe theme, as what would have happened if Square had worked on this after FF V.

Travis Hawks Senior Editor

03/04/2013 at 09:47 PM

I'm stuck playing other things right now, but I want to get back to it.  I continue to really like that game.

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