Category Archives: Preview

Phoenix Wright:Ace Attorney Spirit of Justice First Impressions

For people who don’t know, “Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney-Justice for All” was selected as our site’s pick for Most Anticipated Game of 2016. So any chance that I had to play this game outside of importing it I took it. So what did I think of the games demo? Simply put: I loved it. While the demo is roughly about half an hour, you get the complete Ace Attorney feel fans will know and love, while still being very newcomer friendly.
The demo throws you right into the middle of your first trial, where your tour guide is being accused of murder. Phoenix is thrown into the midst of a trial- while on vacation. It seems that, no matter where he goes, he will never truly get a day off. However, theres a big difference here in the courts compared to back home. In the courts here there are no defense attorneys, so defendants are not allowed to have legal representation.

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Seeing as it was a demo, I had to suspend my disbelief a bit here as to why they allowed Wright to defend his client.Nonetheless, the gameplay here is still very tried and true to the Ace Attorney series: you cross examine the witness ans look for contradictions in their testimonies. That being said, the demo instead takes time to demonstrate the new gameplay mechanic. The mechanic this time around would be “spirit visions” (which makes sense since we are in the country of the Kurain after all). Here, you get a chance to see what victims saw moments before their deaths. This is normally seen as definitive evidence to the defendants guilt, but Phoenix Wright would never take that lying down and instead openly defies the readings, managing to point out contradictions in the visions.

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Pointing out contradictions is basically similar to cross examination, but instead of comparing the testimony to the evidence, you are comparing what is actually shown in the vision versus what is being said is in the vision. This opens a very interesting way to find the truth. For the sake of the demo it was rather simple, so I hope going forward this mechanic is extremely fleshed out. Dual Destinies was disappointing that, while the Mood Matrix was a shiny new mechanic for the series, it was very simple and there was no real flare to it. Plus, there were no consequences if you messed up. This time around if you do mess up in spotting the contradictions, you will be penalized. But at the end of the day, this new mechanic does have quite a bit of potential to add a welcome breath of fresh air into the courtroom.
“Spirit of Justice” is the fourth game in the Ace Attorney series to venture into the world of 3D. It truly does show that as well with how many improvements are made to the game’s overall performance. There are fully 3D animated scenes in this game like that of Dai Gyakuten Saiban. The scenes are very well crafted and I was surprised at what they managed to accomplish on the hardware of the 3DS.

The visuals in this game are also a lot crisper compared to that of Dual Destinies, and overall are very appealing to the eye. When Rayfa was performing her ritual to see the spirit visions, I was entranced with her dancing and amazed as to how well it was animated for the 3DS. I would like to hope that the visual improvements and gameplay changes continue in the rest of the game.
Finally, what is Ace Attorney without the music? I like to put the music in Ace Attorney easily in the top 5 OSTs of all time, so this game has a high bar to meet after the magnificent soundtrack of Dai Gyakuten Saiban and Dual Destinies. While Wright’s Objection theme is just a furthered remix of Objection!~2004, it still sounds extremely well and fits the situations very well. The music of the Kurain is also very atmospheric and makes me think that I am indeed in a mystic country. I look forward to hearing more of this game’s music as my adventure progresses.
All in all, “Spirit of Justice” is looking to be a very strong addition to the Ace Attorney series and is without a doubt going to be a must have game for 3DS owners in September. I look forward to playing the full game, and giving a full indepth review of everything the game has to offer.

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“Phoenix Wright: Spirit of Justice” launches on the Nintendo eShop on September 8th.

 

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What’s Old is New Again: A Odin Sphere Leifthrasir Preview

Platform: PSV/PS3/PS4

Developer: Vanillaware

Publisher: Atlus USA/SEGA

Rated: T

Release Date:June 7th, 2016

Thank you, Atlus for providing an early copy of the game.

Odin Sphere is a series of books with each book while all connected offer a completely different perspective on the same on-going tale about the war in Erion.  This title was originally released on the Playstation 2 back in 2007 and since then has gained a cult following. Odin Sphere Leifthrasir, is a remaster of said game that offers much more than just a simple resolution upscale.

The main emphasis of this remaster is certainly the upgrade in gameplay. Odin Sphere Leifthrasir is an Action Role Playing Game on a 2D plane with its combat has been completely revamped. It’s much, much faster paced than the original as combos are extremely fluid to a point where getting a 100 hit combo on a wave of enemies is incredibly easy and yet incredibly fun to pull off as you’ll be constantly juggling your enemies. In the original game, hoarding seeds weren’t an option as you couldn’t hoard Phozons – a material released by a certain type of plant, butterflies, and mainly defeated enemies, or something you can make it yourself using alchemy. In Leifthrasir you can hoard Phozons, so you can grow plants whenever you want. This is incredibly beneficial as now you don’t have to plant a seed before battle and hope you defeated enough enemies to make it grow by the time the battle was over or just constantly using alchemy. Overall, the game is much more accessible now thanks to the traveling restaurant at resting points as well as a checkpoint system as well. Of course, if you don’t like any of these things you actually just play the original version right from the get-go when you start of up the game and plays just as you remember it.

 

Tokyo Mirage Sessions First Impressions

Why to keep Tokyo Mirage Sessions on Your Radar

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*Editor’s note: This is based off of my time playing the Japanese version of the game.

If someone were to ask me who are my favorite video game developers of all time, two of the ones near the top of the list would have to be any of the many teams currently at Nintendo, and Atlus. Let me give you some backstory on how I grew to love Atlus; I honestly never heard much about Atlus, nor had I played an Atlus game (I’m not counting the impulse buy that was Conception II) until I saw the official announcement trailer for this game when it was under the name of Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem.

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Stella Glow – Preview

About a week ago, in my write-up Thoughts on a Demo- Stella Glow, I wasn’t sure how Stella Glow would turn out because the demo didn’t leave me much to say in terms its battles. However, after about 4 chapters and 17 hours of play, I have to say that this game has met my expectations. The story isn’t anything special and is pretty run of the mill, but it doesn’t bring down the game at all. The characters keep me coming back to this game as they’re all very enjoyable. The battles, while still overall pretty easy are pretty fun to play.

So far, the story hasn’t necessarily done anything unique to sink me into it. The broad overview is that, for some reason, Hilda is bent on crystallizing the world. In order to stop this, Queen Anastasia has ordered her knights to find the Earth Witch, Fire Witch, Water Witch and Wind Witch. This is due to the fact that their powers combined can defeat Hilda. Along the way, they pick up Alto and his friend – just turned Witch, Lissette. All-in-all, the story is nothing amazing. But it’s not boring either. No real twists or any foreshadowing for later in the game. It just feels “standard” for lack of a better word. If anything, there was one interesting turn early on in the game that might have made the game a bit more grim or at least darker in terms of overall scale had that mood been kept throughout the game. But that was just an early chapter. Nothing more.

The characters that hold this story together aren’t necessarily the most unique or special, but they certainly have great qualities to them and mold together very well creating a fun cast. Look at Archibald for example. He’s the most serious of the knights and comes from a long line of honorable blacksmiths. However, during his bonding events, we find out he has an arranged marriage. Believe me when I say that while he’s one of the best in battle, him on a one-on-one conversation is absolutely horrible. I almost felt bad for the girl he had to meet. Constant stuttering, indecisiveness – it’s just a bad time for who has to date him. Naturally, you have someone in the exact opposite camp than him like Rusty, for example. He’s a real ladies man. Never too serious or one to want any responsibilities or deal with children really. He’s just incredibly laid back. So laid back that he’s actually the one who takes you to the tavern for the first time too despite not being old enough to drink. At the end of the day, he’s just a down to earth kind of guy. There are some other people in your party as well like Klaus and the other witches but those two just go with each other so perfectly, that it was immediately noticed.

The only thing so far that’s slightly disappointing are the battles. Don’t get me wrong, the game is very fun. I love SRPGs due of the depth and strategy they provide. This one however, is just straight forward and very simple. The only way to make it difficult is to try and beat each mission under the special conditions they give. Even then, it’s still pretty easy due to the use of songs. What makes Witches special is that they’re the only ones in the world that can sing and that transfers over to gameplay. When Popo sings for example, the opponent can’t attack for two turns. After the first turn of the song has passed, the opponents then have their defense lowered making the whole thing a huge game changer unless the opponent is the type to not be affected by status effects. Luckily, you can’t outright abuse these as they are pretty costly. This example in particular costs four PP. PP can be gained when you do damage to an opponent, you defeat an opponent, an opponent defeats you, and so on. So while battles aren’t necessarily the most balanced thing in the world and are very much in your favor, it’s nothing terrible or even bad. The only real complaint I have is that it’s just too easy.

For Imageepoch’s swan song, I’d say that they a pretty great job. How great? Well, if you want my full thoughts, wait until November 14th for the full review. But, if you couldn’t tell already, I enjoy this game a bit. While nothing in particular stands out on its own, it’s how it all comes together that makes this game worthwhile.

Thoughts on a Demo: Dungeon Travelers 2

Hey guys, Mankoto here, unfortunately I wasn’t able to grab a review copy for Dungeon Travelers 2 so give me a week or so after the game comes out to get a review out. So for now, here are my thoughts on the demo released on tuesday.

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Preview:Lost Dimension First Impressions

Disclaimer: I am about 1/3 of the way through the game at the time of writing this preview.

What happens when you put Danganronpa, Fire Emblem, and Shin Megami Tensei Soul Hackers into a blender and sprinkle Lego City Undercover’s load times? You get Lost Dimension.

Lost Dimension is for PS Vita/PS3

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