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a crooked mile

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a crooked mile

Have you ever wanted to see your favorite childhood fairytale characters as scumbags, liars, criminals, and prostitutes? The Wolf Among Us is a five part point and click game by Telltale Games letting you do just that. Based on the Fables comic book series, you play as Bigby – the human version of the Big Bad Wolf. You’re the sheriff in Fabletown – an underground community of fairytale characters who have lost their home world. For the past two episodes, Bigby has been investigating the murders of two prostitutes, with the help of Snow White.

In this episode, everything you thought to be true about the villains is wrong. By the end of episode three, you find out that there are bigger powers at play – not just Ichabod Crane acting out his sick and twisted fantasies. We find out about a new villain – The Crooked Man. He might be the real mastermind behind the crimes, but with the way the plot twists, you never know.

I think episode three has been the best so far because the plot is paced better than the other two episodes. I never felt like I was in a cut scene too long, or clicking on clues too long. There were just enough quick time events and dialogue woven throughout the game to keep it interesting. There was never a dull moment and I didn’t feel like the episode was too short, like I did with episode two. I never felt like the creators put all their eggs in one basket in one scene. Because of this, I say The Wolf Among Us – A Crooked Mile is a must buy.

The Wolf Among Us is available on PC, Mac, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3.

_-Alpha-Protocol-PC-_

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Have you ever watched a Bond film and thought “that’s what I want to do”? Well, you might change your mind after you play Alpha Protocol. Not because the game is specifically bad, but because you’ll get a feel of what being a spy in the field is actually like.

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Alpha Protocol is an action role-playing stealth game. What a mouthful, but accurate. It was released in 2010, and for a four year old game it feels…older. That’s not a bad thing, mind you.  Most gamers would say their favorites are from a generation of consoles that are no longer distributed, but those games are chosen quite often out of nostalgia. On the one hand those games were the best of their time, but on the other hand they fall short compared to some modern innovations. The point here is that Alpha Protocol feels like one of those games. Something you loved for what it was back when you played it the first time, but over the years it has lost its edge.

To start, Alpha Protocol is truly a spy story. You are Michael Thorton, a new recruit in the Alpha Protocol program, and your job is to serve your country and stop the bad guys. Sounds simple enough given this is the idea behind more than few games. However, you are a spy. Your job is to get things done with minimal exposure. Whether you kill everyone in your way or just leave them with a tortuous headache, no one should know you’re there. Stealth is a great game mechanic, and Alpha Protocol does a great job of using it. Except for the bugs.

Let me talk about those for a moment because most of the issues I had with this game stem from bugged stealth mechanics. There were times when I would be crouched behind a wall, completely out of sight and fully buffed in sound dampening, and taking a few steps alerted a guard more than ten feet away. This would then alert every guard on the map. And if I should come out of cover and actually be seen, one guard would be enough to expose my location to every guard who would then proceed to start shooting. It’s easy enough to rid yourself of guards and turn off an alarm, but in a minute I’ll tell you why this was such a problem.

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This game is good. It’s hard to call it great, and at times it isn’t all that fun, but it’s good. Agent Thorton is betrayed on his first assignment for Alpha Protocol and is set on a path to make things right. Here is where my favorite aspect of the game comes in. Choice. As Thorton you get to choose what happens. How you interact with others can determine how they respond to you and your actions. Gaining friendship has advantages, but so does rivalry. Who you get on your side can change the outcome; deciding who to ally with and who to piss off, that’s the trick. This game requires you to pay attention. Between gathered intelligence, dossier information, and other tidbits you collect along the way there is an abundance of knowledge. Knowing where you’re going, why you’re going there, and who you’re facing will make things far easier. The game doesn’t do all the thinking for you. The missions you choose to do, and the order you choose to do them in, also has impact.

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That’s all great, but how do you actually play? It’s simple enough. There is combat, stealth, hacking, and collecting. In combat you can put points into different weapons: shotguns, SMGs, assault rifles, pistols, and hands. There are also gadgets; from grenades, to flash bangs, to health kits, you can carry a minimal set into missions and use them for different situations. Stealth, while not a requirement in mission, is a good way to get all that you want. Hacking is dealt with in three ways: computers, keypads, and safes. Hacking a computer requires finding a series of non-moving letters and numbers amongst a stream of flashing figures. A keypad is simply hacked by matching numbers is ascending order to their circuit. A safe is a lock picking screen where you move pins into position and click them in place. Collecting is just what it sounds like. Make sure you explore every room because information, money, and security systems may be hiding anywhere (which is useful when you are lacking cash to buy that armor you want). You will spend the majority of the game working on these skills, getting used to being in cover and sneaking into position, only to reach “boss” fights and the final mission.

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Remember when I said how bugged the stealth system was? Here is where that becomes important. Boss fights, including most of the final mission, are tough. Add in the fact that stealth becomes useless and they get tougher. Here, fight a helicopter that can shoot you through cover, never loses target lock, and you have to fire one RPG at a time at it and those RPGs are scattered across the map. On top of that, here are five men who are going to shoot you, chase you, and know where you are because the helicopter never loses target lock. And if one enemy knows where you are, they all do. It’s infuriating.

I will say that I had fun with this game. The story pulls you in, and you feel like a true spy when things go right. The stealth is fantastic, when it works. The characters are ranging, and often have unexpected stories. I plan to try it again, make some different choices and see what happens, but I do like where my initial instincts lead. And that’s good. This isn’t a game that says “here, make a choice” and then gives you a cookie cutter ending. Who you decide to be will change the path, and that’s nice to see.

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There are other things I could cover. How bad targeting is, how wonky movement can be, how bad pathing is for NPCs, how many boss fights I won because of glitches…

If I were to recommend this game it would be lightly. If you like stealth games and spy stories try it out. If you don’t, skip it. Alpha Protocol requires dedication. It asks you to sit down, pay attention, and accept that things will not always go the way you want. You may do a bit of reloading, but know that the only save option is auto saves.

With all that said, you can always use brute force, and then stealth doesn’t matter so much. It will take more time, you’ll face more enemies, and you may lose out on some of the finer points, but at least you’ll know why all the guards are after you.

Sony PS4 Gold Headset

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Sony PS4 Gold Headset

Sony announced on their blog on February 3, 2014 their new Gold Wireless Stereo Headset.  The headset will retail at $99.99 (MSRP).  No set date has been given for when we will see this on the market, though Sony said it will be released early this month.

The specs for this headset are 7.1 virtual surround sound, a noise cancelling microphone, and custom audio settings for the different PS4 games.  The cable is a 3.5mm audio cable.

Everything in the Headset Box PS4

The headset is compatible with the PS4, the PS3, the PS Vita, computers, and mobile devices.  There will also be a free Headset Companion app coming to the PlayStation store some time this month.

You can watch Sony’s video on the new headset below.

Source:  PlayStation Blog

14-for-14

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Sony currently has a sale going on in their PlayStation Store:  14 For 14 with games up to 50% off for everyone or 75% off if you’re a PlayStation Plus member.  For PlayStation Plus Members, BioShock Infinite is available for free.

 

PS3/PSN Games:

WolfAmongUs

The Wolf Among Us – Season Pass  :  $14.99 or $13.49

far cry 3 blood dragon

Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon  :  $7.49 or $3.75

RaymanLegends

Rayman Legends  :  $47.99 or $35.99

Tales of Xillia

Tales of Xillia  :  $19.99 or $10.00

lonesurvivor

Lone Survivor:  The Director’s Cut  :  $7.49 or $5.24

rain

rain  :  $7.49 or $3.75

F12013Cover

F1 2013  :  $29.99 or $20.99

Thomas was alone

Thomas Was Alone  :  $4.99 or $2.50

Puppeteer

Puppeteer  :  $13.99 or $7.00

Crysis 3

Crysis 3  :  $9.99 or $5.00

enslaved

ENSLAVED: Odyssey to the West Premium Edition  :  $9.99 or $5.00

Runner2

BIT.TRIP Presents Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien  :  $7.49 or $3.75

December 16th, 2010 @ 10:17:31

Deus Ex:  Human Revolution – Director’s Cut  :  $14.99 or $13.49

Pool-Nation

Pool Nation  :  $4.49 or $2.25

 

PS Vita Games:

Killzone Mercenary

Killzone: Mercenary  :  $17.99 or $9.00

TWD

The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season  :  $9.99 or $5.00

Stealth Inc

Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark PS Vita  :  $5.99 or $4.19

lonesurvivor

Lone Survivor:  The Director’s Cut PS Vita  :  $7.49 or $5.24

Velocity_Ultra

Velocity Ultra  :  $3.99 or $2.00

Spelunky

Spelunky  :  $7.49 or $3.75

epic mickey

Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two PS Vita  :  $14.99 or $7.50

worms revolution extreme

Worms Revolution Extreme  :  $7.49 or $3.75

Thomas was alone

Thomas Was Alone PS Vita  :  $4.99 or $2.50

limbo

LIMBO PS Vita  :  $7.49 or $3.75

SoulSacrifice

Soul Sacrifice  :  $17.99 or $9.00

pixeljunkmonsters

PixelJunk Monsters: Ultimate HD  :  $7.49 or $3.75

Sly Cooper Thieves in Time

Sly Cooper:  Thieves in Time PS Vita  :  $13.49 or $6.75

Metal-Gear-Solid-Peace-Walker-Screenshot.jpg

Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker  :  $9.99 or $6.99

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Yuna and TidusFor those that are fans of Final Fantasy X and X-2 from the PS2 and awaiting the Final Fantasy X | X-2 Remaster edition for the PS3, there’s apparently some exciting information awaiting us in the interview section of the Ultimania book included in the collection.  The remastered edition has already been released in Japan.

Siliconera translated the interview in Japanese to English. Kazushige Nojima, the Final Fantasy scenario writer, stated that ”If there’s enough demand, then we may possibly see new developments” and “I would personally like to see a sequel like X-3.”

As worried as I would be at the quality of a FFX-3, I can’t say that I wouldn’t be excited to play it.  FFX is my favorite game in the Final Fantasy franchise and I enjoyed FFX-2 as cheesy as it was.  I would love to see a return of my favorite characters in some form or fashion within reason of course.

Final Fantasy X | X-2 Remaster will be available in North America on March 18th and in Europe on March 21st.

Siliconera’s translation post can be found here.

FFX

By Brandon Boatman On 7 Jan, 2014 At 10:54 AM | Categorized As News, PlayStation 3/PlayStation 4, Videos | With 0 Comments
ss-001

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On Jan. 6 2014 we received a deathless video play through of Demon’s Souls.  The men at GheyforGames uploaded their video to YouTube which was immediately posted to the /r/demonssouls subreddit by /u/bnvkte.

The video is a sped up version of the recording and is only 1:31:33 seconds long. For a good portion of the video the Stephen, Toni and Gary (the men who run the channel) are giving commentary about their strategy and what they learned through all of their attempts. The commentary is nonstop for the first 19 minutes of the video and they pick up here and there to add other little informative nuggets.

For any of you familiar with the Souls’ games you know this is an impressive feat. Demon’s Souls, the predecessor to Dark Souls, is recognized as the more difficult of the two games. While this may not be the first ever deathless run it is the first one I could find.

As stated in the video the run took advantage of the “broken” magic component of the game. Once again if you’re familiar with the series you know broken in this sense doesn’t mean cheated, but more fair. Below are all the stats provided by GheyforGames for their character build:

FINAL BUILD STATS!
VIT: 36
INT: 30 (essentially attunement for you DeS nubs)
END: 14
STR: 16 (just enough to use the dark silver shield, although when it comes down to it the Adjudicators shield might be better?)
DEX: 11
MAG: 30 (This is basically dark souls INT (despite there already being an INT in this game)
FAITH: 6 (FUCK THE POPE etc)
LUK: 11 (basically humanity that sticks with you through the game, really only useful with the blueblood sword that scales with luck)

equipment
head: silver cornet : max mp boost
body : fluted set : essentially knight/elite knight
arms : silver bracelets : 20% extra souls
legs : magicians set : leather or black leather?

left arm to right arm
(early game)
adjudicators shield – basically the eagle shield that gives you hp regen
kris blade – a useless offhand weapon, but it boosts spell damage if equipped

(late game)
dark silver shield – a medium shield that if it was dark souls would block 100/100/90/20

crescent falchion – basically an enchanted falchion but it gives you mana regen
silver catalyst – spell tool that scales with strength slightly and has weaker maj adjust BUT gives you more mp

rings
regenerator – hp regen
fragrant – mp regen

(others)
ring of magical nature – +1 spell memory slot ( bassically +1 attunement slot, INT in this game is tied to your mana pool and how many spells you can equip at the onetime)
thief ring – kinda like the ring of fog really

By Garrett Green On 18 Dec, 2013 At 04:57 AM | Categorized As Featured, PlayStation 3/PlayStation 4, Reviews | With 0 Comments
Nexus

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Insomniac hasn’t released a Ratchet and Clank game proper since A Crack in Time back in 2009. Since then, we’ve gotten the spin off games All 4 One and Full Frontal Assault. While not bad games, they were definitely not the true experience we have come to known from our fuzzy Lombax and his robotic backpack. With Into the Nexus, we get back to the tried and true platforming insane gun bolt collecting action we’ve come to love from the series in this great, albeit short, send off for the “Future” series of the Ratchet and Clank games.

Rachet and Clank: Into the Nexus

Into the Nexus takes place after the events of A Crack in Time. Ratchet and Clank are transporting the criminal Vendra Prog when her twin brother Neftin Prog attacks and sets her free. It’s up to the heroes to capture her again and stop her plot to unleash the Nethers into their dimension. The emotional impact isn’t as large as the other “Future” games but the writing is as funny and witty as ever, it does, however, suffer a bit from pacing as this is a short game. There is a huge nostalgic factoring into the story as there are many callbacks to past events and characters. Long time fans will appreciate this but new comers may not. It’s truly a game for the fans, for the newcomers; check out the older PS3 Ratchet and Clank games before diving into this game. Yet if you can’t wait, you can still enjoy this game without prior knowledge of the lore.

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Each world looks beautiful in its own unique way; whether it be the jungle or a deserted city, this might be the best looking Insomniac game to date. The colors really pop and the character animation is spot on. Even with a ton of explosions and enemies on screen the game ran smoothly. And you have some very unique and fun ways to dispatch those enemies. The crazy assortment of guns makes a return in high-powered fashioned. With new twist on some old favorites (The Zurkon Family) and some new ones such as the Nightmare Box and the Winterizer provides fresh gunplay that doesn’t get old. The more you use your weapons, the stronger they become until you turn into a walking destructive force. But with a short game, the weapon selection is noticeably slim compared to previous games.

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There’s also a fare amount of side quest to keep you busy, a lots of collectibles, and a decent amount of replay value. Once you complete the game you can restart with all your weapons and power them up even further.  There is enough here for the game to actually feel longer than it really is. And that seems to be the only thing I can really point out, the one real negative for Into the Nexus is that it’s pretty short. Being short meant fewer worlds, fewer weapons, and less character development from the villains.

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However, that shouldn’t turn you off from this game. For those wanting a change from the doom and gloom gray colored games, Ratchet and Clank provide vibrantly fun filled worlds without being a kiddy game. There’s still a ton to be had and for long time fans, it felt like a great epilogue to the future series. For newcomers, check out the previous titles before checking out this one to get the best experience.

 

By Will On 12 Dec, 2013 At 08:37 PM | Categorized As Featured, Mobile Gaming, PlayStation 3/PlayStation 4, Reviews, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 2 Comments
damndigital_magic-the-gathering_jobs_2013-07

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Duels of the Planeswalkers, is the console version of the 20 year old Trading Card Game Magic: The Gathering. As a player of the game for the past 11 years, I’m super critical about the game in both the cardboard and digital forms. This is the fourth is the series going all the way back to 2009, and has come along way sense the beta I played at the World Championships in 2008, (In Memphis baby!) but how much has it improved?

The Good:

The modes are available right from the start, minus “Revenge Mode”, and includes “Sealed Play” for the very first time. “Sealed Play” gives you 6 packs of cards, and you build a deck much like the paper counterpart. If you feel lost in what to play, there’s a meter on the top of the screen that assists you in the process of making the best deck possible. Although the game can’t assist you on what you should play, as you place cards in the deck you will have the meter rise and fall depending on what you put in and take out capping out at “Awesome”.

The single player campaign follows the Planeswalker Chandra Nalar, as she retrieves artifacts to aid her in her battles. Even though this is as basic as a storyline gets, it’s a first in the history of the franchise. The other versions just pale in comparison as this subtle addition just adds to the flavor of the game.

Magic-The-Gathering-2014-4As of this review, I haven’t had the time to review the online multiplayer and when I do I’ll write another review on it. The Bad:

As you play through the campaign, you unlock cards to add into your deck. The cards are then automatically added to the deck, if you like it or not. This is the biggest issue I have with the game. Not only do they do it against your will, but it even makes your deck bigger when the AI adds lands to help with the lands to spells ratio. The first time I checked to see if this happened, I unlocked all 30 cards for the deck, and when I checked the card count it was at 97! This has plagued the game sense the beginning, and even though it’s small, it’s super aggravating.

“Revenge” mode is unlocked after you complete the campaign, and it’s brutal. Even though I was wanting to 100% the game, it was impossible. The difficulty is turned insanely high, and there wasn’t enough patient bones in my body to sit and try to complete it. Unless you have a high IQ, or have a friend sitting next to you for the assist, it will be a tough and challenging road ahead.

Now it’s time to turn on the megaphone and stand on my soapbox about the biggest issue I have.

pic5The Ugly:

Wizards of the Coast allows you to print out a code to redeem one of three packs, depending on the platform you bought it on. In order to redeem said packs you have to go to a participating store, and bring them the code. No harm, no foul right? That’s where your completely wrong. As I call around to the shops in the area, I was told that they had completely “sold out” of the packs I was trying to claim. The Steam version had a Scavaging Ooze which retails for $10, which gives you your money back. Upon talking to other Magic players at the shop during a “Standard Format” event, multiple players mentioned how they obtained multiple copies of the foil, alternate art, rare. One player mentioned how he preceded to buy his codes from EBay to get the last 8 copies of the cards from the store we were currently sitting in. Knowing that I was looking for the game he even had the balls to attempt to sell me a copy of the Ooze for $25, knowing I should have gotten it for free. Being behind the curve of the actual release of the game, I was pissed knowing that people were going through these lengths to obtain a card, while I’m stuck behind the 8-Ball knowing that I will never get the card unless I pay money out of my pocket. My plea to WotC, put the redemption service back to where it was back in 2009.

During the first release of “Duels” they had them ship you the cards by a in game redemption service and they would ship you the cards. No EBay, StarCity.com, nothing outside of you and the XBox you were on can hinder you receiving it. This is the way it was, and should have been from the start and I beg Wizards to return it to the way it was.

 

 

By Lethal Minx On 16 Oct, 2013 At 11:52 PM | Categorized As PlayStation 3/PlayStation 4, Reviews, Reviews, Uncategorized | With 1 Comment
BTS

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Quantic Dream, creators of Heavy Rain and Indigo Prophecy, take a baseball bat to our hearts and grand slams it out of the park. Beyond: Two Souls is a PS3 exclusive starring Ellen Page, who plays Jodie that has a cursed gift of thanks to her supernatural friend Aiden, and Willem Dafoe, a scientist who specializes in the paranormal. With a game that is jam-packed with emotion, stories, ominous soundtrack, and the perfectly placed thrills, it’s easy to understand why
we’re all hooked on it.

Jodie (Ellen Page) and Nathan (William Dafoe) running through an experiment.

Jodie (Ellen Page) and Nathan (Willem Dafoe) running through an experiment.

Quantic Dream is well known for their incredibly accurate graphics, which makes this game all the more personal. Every pore, snowflake, and texture in fabric is discernible, and quite frankly, it’s really gorgeous to watch. Despite its greatness that myself and my peers rate it, others have their gripes. Although it has the classic Quantic Dream feel and controls, it’s nothing like you’ve ever played before.

A few facts need to be straightened out: Beyond is not a video game, and for those who have played it will understand what that means. This is more of an interactive movie. Here are a few key features to note:

You can’t decide your fate. Yes, QD has taken away the ability to have this game end alternate ways. However, the game leads you to believe that it does due to the amount of options you have with what and who you interact with. You can choose what to wear, what to cook, what to say, etc. There are certain scenes where bad things happen, and you have the choice to take revenge or walk away.

Linear… well… a lot of things. This one is a double-edged feature. This is an interactive movie, after all; the ending will end the way the creators designed it. The sequence of certain scenes will unravel in the same way. When you have control over Jodie or Aiden or any other character, it doesn’t matter what you choose or what you say. That’s also the game’s biggest issue. All that aside, the game makes up for it in many other ways.

Whiplash. Even though the game has so much charm (honestly, it does), it does leave you feeling a bit dazed because it’s not told in chronological order. Jodie tells you this in the beginning, so at least we had fair warning. However, once you finish the game, you can play it in chapter order which will then help you rearrange your thoughts and the story. Maybe you’ll decide a different choice, anywhere ranging from getting revenge to what to wear for your date.

Homeless, hungry, and cold Jodi during her homeless years.

Homeless, hungry, and cold Jodi during her homeless years.

Likable characters. The characters you interact with, I feel, are perfectly executed. Page and Dafoe aside (because honestly, they could never do any wrong), the other main characters each have their own personality, and you see many different sides of them, even if it’s a character you interact with for one chapter. Jodie has just the right amount of sarcasm, wit, charm, and bad-assery that makes her a great lead role. Dafoe woos you with his sincerity and a shocking lack of ulterior motives, which you would expect when dealing with a girl like Jodie.

A great story. While Beyond is practically like Insidious, except without the focus on horror, the game is original. You have a girl whose powers are almost limitless, and somehow Quantic Dream creates a game that is all-encompassing fun, thrills, somewhat comedic, tragic and emotional, and action-packed. The perfectly placed thrills are what makes the game, in my opinion. When you’re dealing with the supernatural, you typically end up with a horror movie, or a comedy like Ghostbusters. If it’s neither one of them, it’ll probably be a flop. Not this time; Quantic Dream really knows what they’re doing.

Overall… It’s a great game and a must play.

Every game has it’s good and bad qualities (except for The Last of Us, which was pure perfection, in this reviewer’s opinion), and gamers will definitely feel hooked and connected to each character on a deep level. You’ll choke, you’ll giggle, you’ll feel content, you’ll be bored sometimes, and you’ll even take a deep breath during the more scary moments; Quantic Dream will cater to all the feels.

FF-Lightning

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I’ll be the first to say that the last good Final Fantasy game that was made was X, however I cannot deny that the Final Fantasy XIII series keeps opening my eyes to the superior graphics that Square Enix continues to dish out.

A few months ago, I wrote an article on Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XII’s story plot. Square Enix just revealed their opening cinematic, and I’m truly impressed. What’s rare for any game, book, or movie, is when the consumer feels like the following installments are better than the original, and I can say that’s how I feel about the FFXIII series. As stated in my previous article, I dreaded every second of playing the first one. It had potential, but then it became complicated too fast, and without the in-game journal of the plot, I’d be lost entirely. The second one was decent as well, introducing a familiar Kingdom Hearts element by allowing the ability to travel through time to fix the world order. According to Square Enix, this next installment will be the last in the series, and I almost want to say “thank God.”

However, this cinematic is extremely awesome, and raises a ton of questions for those who have played FFXIII and FFXIII-2. I don’t want to spoil anything, but there are a lot of  what and why‘s going on.

What do you guys think? Will this be a great game, or will it be just another great cinematic to lure you into something sub-par?

REAL OTAKU GAMER is using WP-Gravatar