I’m a huge fan of the entire Final Fantasy series. I’ve played almost every one since the first (I know, not ubber fan) and I’ve been mesmerized each and every time. My fiance refers to the release of a new Final Fantasy as “The Vanishing” since I disappear and only occasionally pop my head out and say hello.
I’m going to try to sum this up without giving away any spoilers so wish me luck:
Final Fantasy XIII takes place in a world governed by a militaristic force that is ruled by a magical being/force called a fal’Cie. The game begins as people are being “exiled” on board a train. Suddenly all hell brakes lose and some chick with sword/gun starts picking a fight with a group of soldiers. Behind her is a man with a bird in his hair.
This is how we begin Final Fantasy XIII. From here out there is never any down time. The entire game is a fast paced adventure through a foreign world where innocent people get branded by a magical being (the fal’Cie) and have to complete a specific goal (or Focus). If they don’t succeed then they turn into a monster, if they do they are granted eternal life. Pretty easy decision, gimme the eternal life.
Our party is one such group of people, for whatever reasons brought them together on a journey to meet the Pulse fal’Cie what binds them together is their common Focus.
While they attempt to complete their Focus they are constantly sought after by the Sanctum military PSICOM. Wherever they run to they are pursued by an army until they decide they just have to bring the army down.
Final Fantasy XIII: Graphics
Graphically Final Fantasy XIII is no slouch. It is outstanding beautiful to the point that my non-gamer fiance even stopped and exclaimed amazement at what was before her eyes. From the minute the game starts up you are left to look upon the most visually stunning Final Fantasy to date.
Final Fantasy XIII: Gameplay
Many people have a problem with the lack of towns in Final Fantasy XIII but, honestly, they simply wouldn’t fit. You are a fugitive attempting to stay ahead of an entire army. Either that or you’re running through a base/airship/military campaign attempting to accomplish…something. Quite frankly I wouldn’t have the time to stop and chit chat with the townsfolk and sip sweet tea if I were in this position. Who am I kidding. I always have time to sip sweet tea. To that end there really are few townspeople to interact with thanks to the military occupation. The lack of mulling around in towns helps to create the sense of urgency that Final Fantasy XIII is all about.
The lack of MP is a delight for me since it now means I will actually take the time to use and develop my magic. I mean really, I don’t use points when I have to heat up soup, or cool off my coffee. I don’t use points for any action I’ve learned. Never have I ever had to drink something in order to have enough juice to open a can of beans. For that reason I shouldn’t have to make sure I have enough MP to make lightning appear out of nowhere.
That being said pausing after each battle really detracts from this goal. The battle summary (while entertaining and useful) continually causes an otherwise hurried event to be stopped and mulled over.
Final Fantasy XIII: Controls
The controls are exactly what you have come to expect from Final Fantasy. They don’t throw anything new at you here. You have your attack, your technical abilities, and your items. Nothing new. What they do give you that makes it exceptional is the Paradigm system. Being able to set and combine Final Fantasy party members’ roles until you find that perfect unstoppable match is fantastic. That, coupled with the fact that you can swap Paradigms on a whim to fit your need whenever you need to make battles a fast and exciting display of reflex and quick thinking.
Final Fantasy XIII: Story
Eh, what can I say. It’s a Final Fantasy. It’s not the best I’ve seen, but it’s a damn site better than other’s I’ve played. To be honest, I really don’t give a rats ass about Hope and find myself wishing from time to time that Lightning would have left his ass when she had the chance. He’s really the only one though. Every other character has something interesting to say or contribute.
Final Fantasy XIII: Overall Score
I just can’t bring myself to give it a perfect score. It’s missing that certain….something that compels me to declare “Best Final Fantasy EVER”
Don’t like this review? Feel free to voice your opinions below.
Bringing a whole new meaning to the phrase “Touch Mechanic” Fable III is going to allow co-op partners to…well…partner up. The Official Xbox 360 Magazine UK reported that Fable III will allow co-op partners to get intimate with one another and sire an online child.
The team seems committed to ensuring the [co-op] experience is in no way compromised,” writes Mike Channell. “You’ll be able to enjoy, ahem, intimate moments with your co-op friend and eventually produce offspring together.
Personally I can’t wait to see the overreactions and watch as relationships end because one person had a online pixel baby with another behind their IRL partners back. What? I’m a dick like that. Fable III is the new Facebook!
Check out the article at Fable III: You can ‘get intimate’ with co-op partner on OXM UK.
In recent years Final Fantasy protagonists have been traveling down a path that can almost lead us to predict the exact personality of the main character in Final Fantasy XV. Before I share this conclusion with you, let me state that I am a huge Final Fantasy fan and pretty much love most aspects of every game ever since I put the original Final Fantasy cartridge in my old 8-bit Nintendo. They are an enjoyable escape into a color world of magic and turmoil with rich stories and characters.
Typical main characters have a personality that is rather reflective of a stereotypical teenager because in most instances they are in fact teenagers. They are angst ridden uncertain individuals who undergo a great change. Essentially we watch them grow from adolescence to adulthood through great struggle and personal reflection.
With Cloud Strife we saw someone lose all identity. He was a SOLDIER 1st Class who helped bring justice to the one responsible for the tragic events at Nibelheim. Through out his journey we find him wrestle with the facts that he isn’t who he believed himself to be. He was never a SOLDIER 1st Class, he was never a hero he believed himself to be, in fact he was really little more than grave robbing sword stealing materia junkie (and you thought Yuffie had a problem with materia).
Once he discovered that he was not a hero, could not even save a flower girl, and may in fact be a clone he pretty much lost all grip of who he was. He lost touch with himself, with his friendships, and almost helped in destroying the world. He became full of self doubt, self pitty, and self deprecation. My god he became annoying. Throughout the entire middle portion of the game you just wanted to take away his oversize sword with fear that he may cause oversize slits in his wrists.
Then we have Squall Leonhart who can best be summed up in one word: “Whatever.” The other party members even mock him in-game for this being his signature catch phrase. He never shows much emotion throughout the course of the game. He typifies Emo and gets to carry around a large sword attached to a revolver for a mercenary army. Apparently they don’t have mandatory psychological evaluations in the army.
Throughout his journey we come to learn that he’s an orphan who suffers from Guardian Force induced amnesia and is prone to narcolepsy . What makes it even more fun is that he has some form of super narcolepsy that causes those around him to fall asleep. In college we called it Economics. Perhaps I’m wrong and it wasn’t a contagious disease but merely his party members attempt to escape the ever vibrant personality that was Squall. When asked about this Squall responded with:
When we first see him (before we even get to take control of him) we see him get beaten by his rival Seifer Almasy who was a confident, gifted, natural leader that was not afraid to make tough decisions. He was charismatic, sure of himself, and would take on any challenge that came his way. He was a man with goals and with vision and, more importantly, the gumption to see it through to the end. All in all a much more interesting fit had he been chosen as the main character.
Zidane I’m going to skip over. I never really finished nine. Yes I know, Vivi was awesome but I just couldn’t handle the sickeningly cute money man with shirt cuffs with a sleeveless shirt. I still wonder why this fashion trend never caught on.
Tidus was a promising character. He was a popular athlete on a popular team. Sure blitzball was a strange game that left me wondering either 1.) where were their gills and 2.) how long could they hold their breath but it’s still a popular local sport so it gets credit. But then a few minutes into the game you come to find out that he has serious daddy issues. Yes Jecht was a horrible father who verbally abused his son and abandoned his family, but come on…he became a monster that tried to destroy the world. That’s gotta count for something right?
Now we have Vaan. A boy raised in the desert, who lost his parents to the plague and his brother to a war. By rights he has every reason to be upset, but instead of being all angsty and annoying we find him optimistic and full of hope…and annoying. I spent most of the game asking myself why the underage boy wouldn’t put a shirt on and wishing that he would. Thank you Square-Enix for adding Balthier because otherwise I may have stopped playing.
Vaan signature flaw is that he was very childish. He wanted to be a sky pirate (which he just wouldn’t shut up about) and live free and because of this he tended to distance himself from all attachment. He had a wonderful friend in Penelo who was willing to overlook his thievery and life of crime and befriend the person that was inside. She could see the dreams and the hope and she liked what she saw. Perhaps it was the fact that her other close connection in the game was the lizard man who gave them work and by comparison Vaan is a refreshing breath of fresh air, but she stuck by him though he attempted to isolate himself to a life of piracy.
Looking at the four characters we have mentioned we have very specific characteristics that bring us to the modern Final Fantasy Protagonists:
- Lost family on all four accounts
- General unpleasantness
- Fleeing some form of authority/army/group
- Are/were a soldier in an army
If we combine them we have:
Lighting is a culmination of Squall, Cloud, Tidus, and Vaan. On a side note – Square-Enix next time please make the adult female the one in the open vest, not the underage boy. I spend my time in this game hoping Snow and Fang come back soon. They are caring, thoughtful characters who have a clear goal and desire to help others. Lightning is an unpleasant bitch who tells Hope, a whiny weak recently orphaned child with what appears to be a rather substantial Oedipus Complex, that he’s a burden and she’s going to leave him.
Her sister (and last surviving family member) tells her “I’ve been chosen to be an L’Cie, oh yeah and I’m also engaged” and her response is essentially “If you have been chosen to be an L’Cie then I’m going to kill you”. She then choses to verbally and physically abuse her future brother in law for attempting to keep her sister alive and well. We see this all go down on Lighting’s birthday where her sister gives her a knife and she channels her inner Comic Book Guy and declares “Worst birthday ever”. I really hope she undergoes the signature Final Fantasy transformation into adulthood soon because she is really starting to get to me.
But where does this take us? Well Lightning is a little too abrasive. They attempted to combine aspects of all characters that they thought would work but they overdid it. They need to scale it back a bit for the next one. This can only lead us to one logical conclusion. The next main character in Final Fantasy (not Noctis) will be:
And for those keeping score, yes, I said that Kim Jong-il was a scaled back version of Lightning.
Let us know what you think the next Final Fantasy Character is going to be like. Bonus points to anyone who makes a Kim Jong-il character in the upcoming MMO Final Fantasy XIV
Yes yes, its a little late. But none the less here is our review of Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening.
Quickly how the Dragon Age tables have turned. When last we saw our Gray Warden they were either dead after killing the Archdemon, married with a errant step child, or single with a baby momma wandering somewhere in the forest. Parenting aside Dragon Age: Origins was a fantastic RPG. The sequel was something that Polish the Console was anxiously awaiting. It does however leave a few questions to be answered:
Why is my imported Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening Character Naked?
When I first laid eyes on my Warden I felt as though I was seeing a friend I haven’t seen in a while. Then I noticed he wasn’t wearing anything. Basically just what happens when I see a friend I haven’t seen in a while. Why was my Gray Warden running around in his underwear? Did he lose his laundromat ticket? Is the armor chafing? Has life with an Orlesian Bard (Leliana) left him wanting a life free of the encumberments of pants?
The answer to all of these is no. BioWare just did not allow for the import of any DLC armor or weapons. While this didn’t deter me in the least it was certainly comical. How am I supposed to take The Withered seriously when Oghren is mocking him and I’m naked?
However this may be the first time my Warden openly showed off the taint to everyone. Yeah, cheap joke, I know.
Can you save Mhairi?
No. Just like you couldn’t save Daveth…and Jory was a whiny bitch so who cares about him. But no, Mhairi’s death is to signify that the Joining is in fact dangerous and potentially fatal to the wrong person. The Gray Wardens Joining is kinda like dodge-ball; you gotta have gumption to make it through to being a Gray Warden. You can’t just want it, you gotta be good enough.
Where is Sandal?
Seriously…I loved that little guy. Where is he BioWare? He killed an army of Darkspawn by himself so please bring him back.
Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening: The Good
This video game is fun. The story is well thought out, the characters are rich, the setting is fantastic, and the gameplay is spot on where it was the last go round. On top of that you can further expand on your character making the bad assness even more full of bad…and with the naked start its also full of ass. WOO!!
The new darkspawn and eight boobed Brood Mother have me anxiously awaiting to find out what their plot is, where they came form, what they want, who they are, and where they get their snappy wardrobe.
I am absolutely hooked.
By the way: Oghren’s lines still have me wetting myself with laughter.
Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening: The Bad
It certainly seems to hiccup a lot. You can tell when you’re in a big battle because everything slows down. It only froze once on me though (way to beat Heavy Rain). Starting naked wasn’t terrible, it just ruined the congruity of everything.
Even though tenting would seem totally out of place in setting of Dragon Age it would still be fun.
Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening: The Score:
4 / 5
Its an expansion. It’s not going to be groundbreaking, overly inventive, or totally new. However do you think they could have fixed the naked start problem? That just seems like a HUGE oversight.
March 16th marks two of my favorites holidays: 1.) The release of the new Dragon Age:Origins – Awakening 2.) St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner. To commemorate this occasion we at Polish the Console have devised a series of shots for each party member in Dragon Age: Origins.
Morrigan: Angry, Bitter, Dark
1/2 Black Velvet
Morrigan is an angry bitch of a woman who doesn’t care who you are or what you do. Stay out of her way and don’t get involved. If you absolutely have to be ready for an experience that can only be best summed up with: alone, sore, and full of shame.
Alistair: sweet, easy going down, but not easy to get with
3/4 shot Bacardi Rum
1 splash of Baileys Irish Cream
Little Bit O’ Honey
Alistair is a big softy. He’s not hard, but he does pack a bit of a bite. He’s easy on the eyes, and from what I’m told, on the taste buds
Leliana: Lame, tells long stories that go nowhere, relatively pointless
1/2 shot O’Douls
1/2 shot Sweet Vermouth
In some circles this is also known as the “Aspergers”. While Leliana can (from time to time) be somewhat interesting to have around, there is really little to no point to her presence. It’s essentially like doing a shot just for the bitter, boring, and uninspired flavor.
Sten: Sour, Angry, and Hard Hitting
1/2 shot Jack Daniels
1/2 shot Bacardi 151
1/2 shot Apple Pucker
Yes that’s 1.5 shots. Sten is a big boy, get a small glass. Sten isn’t pleasant to have around. He is a large bitter giant who steals various confectionery treats from fat children. Once he starts swinging back up or get knocked down and knocked down hard.
Zevran: smells bad, he’s nasty, and he likes to sneak up from behind
Grape Jello Shots mixed with 1800
There is nothing that sneaks up on you quite like Jello shots. He may play all coy and innocent with a strange leather boot fetish but turn your back on him and he’s all over you. This goes for in the tent and outside of it. He’s an assassin. It’s what he does.
There are few things like an 1800 Jello shot that can do you in for the night once it hits you.
Dog: Panty Droppers. That’s what dogs are best at. ‘Nuff said.
Oghren: Short, dangerous, bitter, and angry
Shot of Whiskey
He’s a small fireball of bitter rage. Deep down he’s not so bad but my god can he do some damage when he wants to. You could see yourself having either a great time or a broken rib when you hang with Oghren. You also may find yourself having a slew of barely coherent insults thrown your way.
Dragon Age: Origins Optional Party Member – Shale
You’ve gotten every other party member, why not go for 100%. It’s time to get shale. Lets face it, after gathering and taking everything listed above you may be hurting a little. It’s time to fall over and take a big face full of sidewalk. Lets face it, that’s pretty much what shale is. One big walkin’ talkin’ sidewalk covered in semi precious gems.
Everyone have a happy St. Patrick’s Day. I challenge you to gather your own party and have yourself a little adventure to fight an archdemon of your own.
BTW, we here love new drink recipes. If you think you have a better one please let us know with the comment section.
You have to love the God of War series. The unabashed way they depict sex is simply sublime. In God of War III you get to have the chance for Kratos to test himself against the Goddess of Love and Sexuality herself. That’s right Aphrodite is the God of War III Sex Mini Game.
If you’re going to go for the biggest game in the series, you have to have the biggest name in Greek Sex represented.
Click the image for the NSFW Video:
WARNING: Marketing Idea Below. Hey at least I warned you.
With the release of Final Fantasy XIII people who are interested can pick up the PS3 version and apply to take part in the upcoming beta of Final Fantasy XIV – an MMORPG set in the wondrous world of chocobos and mages. While not everyone will get accepted into the beta, those that apply will receive a free in-game item for Final Fantasy XIV.
Since they have yet to announce if the game will be available for the XBox 360 all of the 360 owners currently receive are some avatar items. This creates a bit of a disparity between XBox 360 and PS3 owners. That’s fine by me, I mean 360 owners have been getting great things while PS3 owners are left to sit back and wait to buy their 360s.
But what’s important is that PS3 owners are doing something to get something. Playstation needs to take a lesson from this and use it to help themselves out. As of yet (at least to my knowledge) Playstation Home is relatively useless. You can play a game or two but nothing has yet to keep me coming back for more. The single most interesting thing they did in my eyes was Xi. They have all of these game specific spaces and all they really have to offer is “Hang out and chit chat!” Sorry Sony, not my thing.
However, imagine if while hanging out in Playstation home you were tasked to find things, or solve puzzles, or…well…anything engaging. When you solved the puzzle, found all the items, or whatever the task may be then you were eligible to receive an in-game item, map, tenting video, or some form of compensation to make us WANT to spend time in Home.
Now Sony, you and I both understand marketing and product placement. Imagine having a space that users flock to in order to receive special items and upgrades that are otherwise unavailable. Why I do believe you have some available ad space.
Just think of it. Someone comes in after searching for all 50 Golden Chocobo Statues to unlock that special sword to kill 50 wolves and get that special “You Killed 50 Wolves with the Sword of Home” Trophy and in the background they see a logo/image/video for a new game/movie/book/shoe/whatever. It’s like going onto a blog and finding a commercial for Final Fantasy XIII at the bottom of the post: