Archives for February 2008

In [Nat’s] Hands: Wipeout Pulse

Wipeout PulseAs many of you know, I’ve been going on and on the last couple of days (or is it weeks) about Patapon. Yes, it is a PSP must buy, and yes, it is a challenge to play. However, this post is not about that game. I actually ended up with something unexpected on top of Patapon.

While getting another game for my brother’s birthday (the greatest console game of all time, in my opinion) and trading in a bunch of games (a LOT, but not all, and if you’ve been following my little project here that may gave you a hint of another upcoming post), I was able to score Wipeout Pulse for $5 with a trade promotion and still keep a lot of my credit.

I’m not a big fan of the Wipeout games, but some people are diehard fanatics. Insane people. However, I have owned every Wipeout game on the PSP (there’s been only one) . At $5, how could I not pass it up. (I broke my “no new games” rule. I’ll confess later).

Anyway, this title is probably has the best presentation I’ve ever seen in a handheld game. Name any recent feature found in games and Wipeout Pulse has it: achievements, wifi play, major stat tracking, nostalgia play, minor rpg elements, a great soundtrack, custom soundtracks using your own MP3s, JPG screenshots you can save to the memory stick, and the list goes on. There’s even a browser link in game that let’s you get more vehicles, tracks, and other such goodies from a PSP formatted website. Oh, and there’s 8 person online play. That feature alone makes it that there is no excuse for any racing game on the PSP to not have online play.

In some respects this game appears to be a giant homage to the diehard fans. However, the game does appear to be getting favorable reviews from mainstream outlets. Their only complaint seems to be that the races really offer nothing new and that the endgame can be difficult. I find that to be ironic that most reviews mention that because the Wipeout games have never really changed all that much as far as gameplay is concerned.

According to my profile’s stat page, I’ve only played 2 minutes and 33 seconds on one race. (I finished 7th out of 8 slots), but I figure I’ll probably pick this game up from time to time for some fast-paced filler.

Oh, did I mention that you can create custom decals to share online for your racers? The only downside is that it appears that add-on content for some of the items will cost some moolah. That’s kind of a bummer because the previous game offered downloadable content for FREE. We can probably thank Xbox Live for that.

It’s Final Fantasy Tactics, and I need more parenthetical references (maybe?).

Comic Watch [Jump Start]

Jump Start

Haha! Watching TV and playing video games makes you fat! Especially if you’re a… dog.

Puzzle Quest: Galactrix

A couple of weeks ago, I shared with you about my little renaissance I’ve had with Puzzle Quest. It is the only game I’ve really put some time into this last month while my family and I were (and are) under the weather. Well, it seems as if D3 Publishers of America has finally release information about their pseudo-sequel called Puzzle Quest: Galactrix. This person is excited. Puzzle Quest is the only game I have bought three times: DS, 360, and PC.

If you’ve never played it, get the PC demo. I guarantee, you’ll get it for something. (It’s available everywhere at budget pricing). Kotaku was able to score an interview with the developer and they were able to address some things and find out a little more about the gameplay.

Puzzle Quest: Galactrix

The round pieces have changed to hexagonal ones and extra challenge has been added by the movement of the hexagons once you have matched up your three or more. Instead of dropping straight down, your columns slide diagonally, and depending on which piece you move, the columns will fill in either from the left or the right. Gravity will have a bearing on the various movements of the pieces as well making you have to think in several directions at once.

One of the things I asked about was whether the AI was going to be improved over the seemingly punishingly difficult AI of the original Puzzle Quest. I was told that the developers had heard players issues and it was something they were working on.

The game is set to be released later this year, and that’s just not soon enough.

Thanks to Kotaku for the pic. Be sure to head there for more info.

Monday Lunchtime Smiles

Star Wars according to a 3 year old.

Cutest thing ever. (via)

Pata Pata Pata Pon

Patapon Screenie

I am predicting that particular phrase will become a part of 2008 video game vernacular. Having just finished only the demo, I’m predicting this will (1) either be PSP game of the year or (2) be a good year for the PSP.

Patapon may be a little hard to describe but it’s essentially a rhythm RPG game. I use the term RPG lightly because it’s in experience only. You have these little creatures that look like eyeballs that basically worship you. They’ll perform actions for you in a four beat rhythm. Along the way, they build experience, gain new weapons and armor, and a couple of new skills. You can also do minor formations to your little armies. Screenshots of this game really don’t do it justice. Many a times I was distracted (initially) on playing by just listening to these little guys and laughing at their animations.

A demo has been out for about a week or two and if you have a PSP you should snag it. I guarantee you’ll play it straight through. Plus, at the end of the demo, the game lets you perform a special save that provides you with a unique weapon to use with the retail game. I’ve had this game pre-purchased for over two months and I’ve raved about it before. (Go there for some old gameplay video). At $20 it is a PSP must buy. Come this Tuesday, I’ll be throwing my army into the rhythmic fray.