Friday, October 28, 2016

#TeamHandheld Report - 10/28/2016

Sorry about missing last week's #TeamHandheld Report, but chemo got the better of me. I figured it would be better to take my time and just play some games while I recovered. Silly Dark Souls III got in the way. Hopefully we'll get Salt and Sanctuary on Vita soon so I can get my fix there.

Now Playing

Alone With You (Vita)

In many ways Alone With You is deeper than Benjamin Rivers's first game, Home, but in others I didn't feel it had as much impact. Having now finished it, I enjoyed it, but at the same time had issues with how things wrapped up. Exploring ruined locations on this desolate planet felt creepy, especially when you find out how the people you are talking with each night died, but my problem came from the later hologram interactions and the game's ending. Early encounters with the holograms were curious interactions, learning about how they lived and dealt with others. The problems came later on when things started getting revealed without much real impact. It could have been how I had engaged with the holograms, but I had no idea if that's the case without replaying the game and trying different options.

With Home, I knew that things could have gone differently, but was fine with my choices because it was clear that my path was the one I'd meant to take. I wasn't as sure with Alone With You. The ending also was a problem for me, because the choice I made didn't really give me enough content to care about how others reacted to my decision. It just ended flatly, which is a shame because it spent so much time building up the relationships along the way.

-Enjoyable, though fell flat at the end-

Yomawari: Night Alone (Vita)

Wow, way to turn me off right off the bat, Yomawari: Night Alone. Within the first few minutes the main character watches her dog get run over with little reaction afterwards. She then sets out to explore a dark, spooky cityscape and is set upon by various monsters that she has to hide from while aimlessly wandering around. After a couple of failed attempts to hide or avoid the monsters, my patience wore out and I decided this wasn't for me. While it definitely nails the spooky atmosphere and might get more interesting further in, the intro turned me off so fast that I couldn't bring myself to go back. If you are into horror and have more patience than I, give it a shot, but it is a big pass for me.

-Wow, no thanks. Dog killers...-

Valkyrie Drive -Bhikkhuni- (Vita)

So few hack and slash games really grab me, but I'm always willing to give them a try. Sadly, Valkyrie Drive -Bhikkhuni- didn't make the cut either. First off, it commits the number one video game sin...too many tutorials. I'm pretty sure there's nothing about this I couldn't learn on the fly, so please stop making me play through a pointless tutorial for the sake of how to move and attack. The gameplay itself seemed less precise or tight than Senran Kagura, though the concept was about the same. Lots of dialogue, swarms of enemies, and lots of bouncing. If that's your thing, dive in. That said, Senran Kagura was better.

-Less tutorial, more action please-

Criminal Girls 2: Party Favors (Vita)

Criminal Girls 2: Party Favors was really interesting, but starts off way too slow. It took too long for me to get more than one character to be able to attack in battle, because I needed to motive them. The sexual pandering mini-game that lets me do this wasn't the problem I had here, it was the fact that the rubbing mini-game was shoehorned in as the only want to boost characters and make them act in combat. While it fits within the reformation theme of the game, what's fun about having a party of characters that can't do anything? It would have been great to have the mini-game be a feature that you can use to enhance them later on, but not just to get them to do basic actions. A poor start, but if you can get over that hump Criminal Girls 2 is not that bad of a dungeon crawler. Just way too slow to get going.

-Fan service isn't a problem, gameplay is-


Exist Archive (Vita)

I wasn't a Valkyrie Profile fan, so that part of the marketing isn't what sold me on picking this up. The Metroid-style comparisons are what got me, so I hope they hold up somewhat.

World of Final Fantasy (Vita)

I hated the demo, but the full game's been interest so far. Still really early, so can't say much yet.

Exile's End (Vita)

Another Metroid comparison on this one? Hmm, gotta see where it goes. XSEED published this indie game, so I hope I see what they did.

Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon (Vita)

This looks cute, so I'll be curious what it even plays like. I haven't looked too deeply, but will check it out and report back.

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