Doubt this will end well.

Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII

( Hey, remember my last blog?) You do? Well, forget it. Just go ahead and detach your brain stem so that you know you won't remember it...assuming that you can still know things after that. I don't want to have to deal with that yet again. Unfortunately, I think I'll have to, and for one big reason: I actually kinda liked this game. What (now you see why I chose that song)? Isn't this supposed to be how Square cashed in on fandom and blah blah blah? I guess, but that doesn't mean that the game can't be OK, does it?
 
Of course, I can at least understand some of the criticisms people lobby against this game. First up: the story. I'm not gonna lie: it sucks. You can tell as soon as the game begins, since it takes all the mystery and unanswered questions that made the ending to Final Fantasy VII so good and guts the hell out of it by explaining what went down in Midgar when Meteor fell. First, they decided to call the event "Meteorfall." Fucking clever. Second, three years passed, and other (maybe better) games/anime/whatever were made. For reasons unexplained, on the third year mark, shit starts to happen. Specifically, a Nazi-terrorist-Shinra-funded (it's pronounced Sheen-Ra, because the voice actors aren't very good (more on that later)) group called Deepground is stirring shit up in order to awaken the evil Omega. It's up to Vincent Valentine to go it alone and stop these guys. Yes, alone. You want to see Cloud, Barrett, Tifa, (the oddly redneck) Cid and all your other buddies? Two words of advice to you: don't blink. So who stays around long enough to have some type of influence? The almost overly energetic Yuffie, and the now playable and oddly Scottish Cait Sith. Somebody needs to remind me what connection this has to Final Fantasy VII in the first place. The events of that game don't have much of an influence, and the closest it comes is in the Lucrecia flashbacks. There, Vincent's character is almost developed, but a lot of that was already done in the source material, so what are we left with?
 
 Hey, you got your Beauty and the Beast in my Final Fantasy VII.
That's right: a fairly generic action movie story. Again, evident from the beginning. The lazily reminiscent of Advent Children beginning. These cutscenes are nothing short of pure badassery. You'll see Vincent make things explode in mid-air, fly about in that lame Chaos form, and do other cool action movie stuff. But the in-game story...fuck. It's nothing but bland villains with redundant names (Rosso the Crimson, Azul the Cerulean, Color the Shade, etc.), poor writing, a billion unexplained holograms, and crap voice acting. Damn it, the voice acting. Why is there so little emotion? Did they have to ration off the emotions because of a low budget? It's especially bad with Vincent and Shelke the "Oddly Hasn't Gone Through Puberty" (I'm not trying to be a pervert with that statement, but the game says that she's 19, even though she doesn't look old enough for a training bra), both of whom emote with all the strength of Microsoft Sam. Although I must say that out of all these emotional trains-that-haven't-started-moving, I absolutely love Reeve. Despite being part robotic cat, the guy comes off as a poetic badass whenever he wants to. Hell, early in the game, he asks you if the wind sounds like a thousand wailing souls. It's like one day, he cast a fishing line into the Lifestream and just waited for Walt Whitman mako. Why can't everybody be this fucking awesome?
 
I feel like now would be a good time to remind myself of why I like the game: the actual game. I'm not saying that it's especially awesome; just that it's passable enough to be decent. If I have to tell you that it's a third person shooter, then let me draw you a picture of what you need to do, because words are too complicated for you. However, there is one thing that a lot of people don't know: you can play this game almost entirely in first person. What, you thought it was just for aiming? Hell no! I played the whole damn thing in first person, and it worked oddly well. In fact, the only major problem I encountered was that sniping was a pain in the ass, since you don't have analog anything. You want analog aiming or zooming? Go play something like...actually, I can't remember any FPSes that have zooming for sniper rifles, and saying "Donkey Kong 64" would be enough to get my ass kicked. You want a third person shooter, though? I'm not sure this is the place to look for that, since it's kind of all over the place with what it wants to be. I As if it wasn't enough to be an FPS, now it wants to be a PC FPS, because while I was browsing the manual and remembering a time when they didn't suck, I noticed a page about keyboard controls. Huh? Why would that be necessary in any way ever? Could anybody on the development team agree on a genre for this game? I'm guessing not, because along with watered down RPG elements, you occasionally get these weird meta mini-games to interrupt the averageness, like "figure out this cardkey puzzle" or "kill all these dudes if you want." I realize that the game already has you killing dudes, yet it somehow makes a game out of killing dudes in such a game. Have you ever seen such insanity? Speaking of, that's part of why I like this game: I like to see myself in the games I play.
 
 He may look badass, but Hojo's voice ruins any fantasy of such badassness.
I'm also an incredibly violent person (crazy and violent kind of go hand in hand, especially when those hands are beating anything nearby), so how do you think I felt when I saw that this game had melee combat? Surprisingly, disappointed, because unsurprisingly, the melee in this game sucks. However, there is one good side to it that I should list off first: you don't use it a lot. Or at all. The only possible time you need it is when enemies have magical shields which are immune to bullets but not fists. Think that's a big oversight? It is, but an even bigger one is that magic still gets through these shields that are made of magic, and trust me when I say that magic is much better than melee. Even though it doesn't ever heal (I guess part of Sephiroth's plan to wipe out the planet was to destroy all the healing materia in case there were survivors), it can kill multiple enemies from afar. Melee, however, requires that you run up to one single guy and mash the circle button for an hour and hope that it leaves a bruise. The only way to do significant damage with this is to unleash the kinda stupid looking Chaos form. Of course, that thing can also shoot, and you only use it for limited amounts of time, so I guess in trying to make the melee system useful, Square just piled on something else that was completely useless. It's kind of like they know what logic is, but don't know the direction it's supposed to go in.
 
Fortunately, though, you won't spend most of the game using any of the shit I listed in the last paragraph. Instead, it's all guns. You get a pistol for when the other guns don't work, a machine gun for killing everything really quickly, a rifle for sniping, a....wait, that's it. OK, so the game doesn't have a wide array of weapons, but it makes up for it by allowing you to customize the hell out of them. You get tons of barrels, accessories, other types of accessories, and tons of other crap to shove onto your gun. Of course, all of this would be for naught if the scenarios in which you use the guns were all crap. Those of you expecting me to say just that should lick a wall socket so you'll know what shock feels like, because the sequences in this game are kind of cool. True, a lot of it is just gunning dudes down, but you'll also get to see them stuffed into boxes and die in a rail shooter segment near the end of the game. The only downside seems to be the bosses. Backwards logic strikes again, since they're usually worse than what the rest of the game offers. I could usually just aim my gun at them and just hold R1 and let the increasing damage take care of the rest. Not even the final boss is immune to this; I just stood in one place the entire time and did what I said one sentence ago. That's not how you're supposed to end a game, Square (possibly) Enix. You're supposed to use it to sum up the spirit of the game. You know how you could have done that best? Bring back that beast guy (not necessarily this one, but I'd fucking buy it), make him slightly challenging, and detach the entire fight from the rest of the plot.
 

Review Synopsis

  • Do I have to say that the story sucks?
  • Yet I do have to say that the gameplay is oddly competent yet schizophrenic.
  • Just use guns, and maybe magic. Nothing else is useful.
 
 
 
 
Anybody remember 2005? You know, the year when anime girls took to their Big Smokes and rebelled against their Terminator overlords?....What the fuck were we smoking six years ago?
  
  

Donkey Kong 64

( Eh, fuck the idea of a special banner.) For those of you confused by that statement (IE everybody reading this), let me clarify. Whenever I do one of these revisit blogs, I feel like I should make a special banner for it to alert you guys that I'm covering games that aren't super obscure. However, after recently finishing a banner for my next blog (it'll be #200), I feel like it would be too much work. Trust me, I know what the hell hard work is. After all, I beat Donkey Kong 64. Twice.
 
Why is that such a big thing? Simply put: there's a lot to do in this game. There are about eight levels to explore, and each one is the size of your average Grand Theft Auto game. Yes, it's impressive that Rare was able to stuff that much (along with all the other good things I could potentially say about the graphics) into a yellow piece of plastic, but eventually, these levels become a bit confusing to navigate. Part of it seems to be the level design itself; each level is a series of sub-levels connected by extremely dark hallways, so it's hard to get a feel for where the hell everything is. The warp pads strewn about kind of help, but I feel like Rare could have done more to make the levels less of a nightmare to explore. It's a shame, too, because again, there's a lot of cool shit to do in each level. There are tons of bananas to collect, smaller bananas to collect (Donkey Kong always was a bit of a junkie), (useless) battle crowns to collect, (eventually useless) coins to collect...I guess what I'm trying to say is that this game was specifically made for kleptomaniacs. Absolutely nothing in this game lacks any form of collecting. Hell, you can't even race without having to collect 50 coins for a Chaos E-golden banana. Stop making me hoard things, Donkey Kong 64! I know for a fact that you recognize this as a problem. At some point, you exhausted your golden banana ideas and decided to fill the remainder with "just stand here and do something" bananas. If you don't know what you'd do if Animal Planet's reality show people started interviewing all your friends, look at all the times you don't collect things. Pretty cool shit is going on in that time, like rabbit races, brief amounts of control over (non-monkey) animals, mini-games apparently programmed by the local county fair. Just do more of that.
 
 Do I have to say anything? It simply makes fun of itself.
Unfortunately, Rare misinterpreted "that" by giving you five playable Kongs. Not that it's all bad or anything; each Kong comes equipped with a bunch of cool abilities (once you buy them, of course), like shooting, playing instruments (I'd make a Jackson 5 joke, but I feel like that would be racist), and even some character exclusive ones. I'd tell you all the awesome stuff that they lead to, but I feel like I spoiled it with the earlier comments on rabbit races. However, if that wasn't enough, then how about jetpacks and invisibility and other cool stuff like that? I told you that there was a lot to do on the DK Isles, and a lot of it is fairly well executed. There's just one problem with it that I feel like I've already mentioned: the collectibles. Each Kong has their own set of collectibles that only they can collect, which (predictably) will make you quite familiar with the character select barrel. It gets especially bad when you're walking down a hallway of exclusively purple bananas, but red bananas suddenly interrupt the line. Now I have to walk all the way back to the nearest barrel to switch to Diddy or risk forgetting all these juicy bananas. That may not sound like much, but you need a lot of bananas to get through the game. By the end, you'll need 400 bananas to get the same high that 150 would get you a few hours ago. This wouldn't be too much of a problem is not for the flow-interrupting banana switch I mentioned earlier. What exactly does this add to the game....besides length?
 
I guess the only other answer to that question would be "bosses". Remember what I said about chasing that banana dragon earlier? Turns out that you need to do it to get to any of the bosses, meaning only one thing: Donkey Kong's bananas are filled with cocaine (I'm guessing that bananas are the Nintendo equivalent of condoms) and they're the only way he can gather enough strength to beat any of the bosses. That probably explains why they tend to fall on the easy side. Hell, not even the final boss, Wrestler K. Rool (I guess the only career below scientist is pro wrestler), is immune to this. The premise is that you fight him as each of the five Kongs, but with a special twist: "fight" is meant to be "repeat this one action four times." You'll shrink down, grow big, fly, launch yourself from barrels, and some fifth thing to defeat this once mighty King. Wait, I just figured something out: all of that is pretty awesome. The same goes for the other bosses, like Donald Duck in a jack in the box, or the Jafar battle from Kingdom Hearts. I guess the only major flaw with these bosses is that they're super easy.
 
I just realized that this blog is breaking tradition by not starting off with the story. Trust me when I say that bad things (like this blog) happen when I don't lead with the story. I'd probably say something like "let's get to correcting this", but the damage has already been done. Anyway, King K. Rool yet again wants Donkey Kong's bananas, and yet again, he has a plan to get them: capture all the Kongs except Donkey, and then....does absolutely nothing for the entire game. Wait, what? That's a terrible strategy! His previous plans started off by capturing Donkey Kong, so what the crap? Well, speaking of previous Donkey Kong games, neither Dixie nor Kiddie Kong make an appearance in this game. I can only assume that K. Rool had them killed in their sleep, so I guess that makes up for DK's lack of imprisonment. I'd go on about the story, but the only other thing of note is that there's a lovable idiot you try to free for the entire game. The rest of the story is just Rare charm (fourth wall humor, cute animals, decent music, etc) and mediocre voice acting. Don't believe me? Go watch the opening cutscene and tell me when the voice work matches the lip animations. And that's just the cutscenes. In the actual game, Donkey Kong spends half his time makign these oddly sexual grunts, like h....let's just wrap this up. So yea, that's Donkey Kong 64: a collect-a-thon platformer that would be pretty damn awesome if not for the collect-a-thon part. Excuse me while I use time travel to get the Rare from 2001 to usurp the Rare from 1999. What could possibly go wrong?
 

Review Synopsis

  • There's way too much crap to collect.
  • But there's also a lot of cool stuff to do.
  • Wow, that was a terrible blog. At least the title was accurate.
29 Comments
30 Comments
Edited by Video_Game_King

Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII

( Hey, remember my last blog?) You do? Well, forget it. Just go ahead and detach your brain stem so that you know you won't remember it...assuming that you can still know things after that. I don't want to have to deal with that yet again. Unfortunately, I think I'll have to, and for one big reason: I actually kinda liked this game. What (now you see why I chose that song)? Isn't this supposed to be how Square cashed in on fandom and blah blah blah? I guess, but that doesn't mean that the game can't be OK, does it?
 
Of course, I can at least understand some of the criticisms people lobby against this game. First up: the story. I'm not gonna lie: it sucks. You can tell as soon as the game begins, since it takes all the mystery and unanswered questions that made the ending to Final Fantasy VII so good and guts the hell out of it by explaining what went down in Midgar when Meteor fell. First, they decided to call the event "Meteorfall." Fucking clever. Second, three years passed, and other (maybe better) games/anime/whatever were made. For reasons unexplained, on the third year mark, shit starts to happen. Specifically, a Nazi-terrorist-Shinra-funded (it's pronounced Sheen-Ra, because the voice actors aren't very good (more on that later)) group called Deepground is stirring shit up in order to awaken the evil Omega. It's up to Vincent Valentine to go it alone and stop these guys. Yes, alone. You want to see Cloud, Barrett, Tifa, (the oddly redneck) Cid and all your other buddies? Two words of advice to you: don't blink. So who stays around long enough to have some type of influence? The almost overly energetic Yuffie, and the now playable and oddly Scottish Cait Sith. Somebody needs to remind me what connection this has to Final Fantasy VII in the first place. The events of that game don't have much of an influence, and the closest it comes is in the Lucrecia flashbacks. There, Vincent's character is almost developed, but a lot of that was already done in the source material, so what are we left with?
 
 Hey, you got your Beauty and the Beast in my Final Fantasy VII.
That's right: a fairly generic action movie story. Again, evident from the beginning. The lazily reminiscent of Advent Children beginning. These cutscenes are nothing short of pure badassery. You'll see Vincent make things explode in mid-air, fly about in that lame Chaos form, and do other cool action movie stuff. But the in-game story...fuck. It's nothing but bland villains with redundant names (Rosso the Crimson, Azul the Cerulean, Color the Shade, etc.), poor writing, a billion unexplained holograms, and crap voice acting. Damn it, the voice acting. Why is there so little emotion? Did they have to ration off the emotions because of a low budget? It's especially bad with Vincent and Shelke the "Oddly Hasn't Gone Through Puberty" (I'm not trying to be a pervert with that statement, but the game says that she's 19, even though she doesn't look old enough for a training bra), both of whom emote with all the strength of Microsoft Sam. Although I must say that out of all these emotional trains-that-haven't-started-moving, I absolutely love Reeve. Despite being part robotic cat, the guy comes off as a poetic badass whenever he wants to. Hell, early in the game, he asks you if the wind sounds like a thousand wailing souls. It's like one day, he cast a fishing line into the Lifestream and just waited for Walt Whitman mako. Why can't everybody be this fucking awesome?
 
I feel like now would be a good time to remind myself of why I like the game: the actual game. I'm not saying that it's especially awesome; just that it's passable enough to be decent. If I have to tell you that it's a third person shooter, then let me draw you a picture of what you need to do, because words are too complicated for you. However, there is one thing that a lot of people don't know: you can play this game almost entirely in first person. What, you thought it was just for aiming? Hell no! I played the whole damn thing in first person, and it worked oddly well. In fact, the only major problem I encountered was that sniping was a pain in the ass, since you don't have analog anything. You want analog aiming or zooming? Go play something like...actually, I can't remember any FPSes that have zooming for sniper rifles, and saying "Donkey Kong 64" would be enough to get my ass kicked. You want a third person shooter, though? I'm not sure this is the place to look for that, since it's kind of all over the place with what it wants to be. I As if it wasn't enough to be an FPS, now it wants to be a PC FPS, because while I was browsing the manual and remembering a time when they didn't suck, I noticed a page about keyboard controls. Huh? Why would that be necessary in any way ever? Could anybody on the development team agree on a genre for this game? I'm guessing not, because along with watered down RPG elements, you occasionally get these weird meta mini-games to interrupt the averageness, like "figure out this cardkey puzzle" or "kill all these dudes if you want." I realize that the game already has you killing dudes, yet it somehow makes a game out of killing dudes in such a game. Have you ever seen such insanity? Speaking of, that's part of why I like this game: I like to see myself in the games I play.
 
 He may look badass, but Hojo's voice ruins any fantasy of such badassness.
I'm also an incredibly violent person (crazy and violent kind of go hand in hand, especially when those hands are beating anything nearby), so how do you think I felt when I saw that this game had melee combat? Surprisingly, disappointed, because unsurprisingly, the melee in this game sucks. However, there is one good side to it that I should list off first: you don't use it a lot. Or at all. The only possible time you need it is when enemies have magical shields which are immune to bullets but not fists. Think that's a big oversight? It is, but an even bigger one is that magic still gets through these shields that are made of magic, and trust me when I say that magic is much better than melee. Even though it doesn't ever heal (I guess part of Sephiroth's plan to wipe out the planet was to destroy all the healing materia in case there were survivors), it can kill multiple enemies from afar. Melee, however, requires that you run up to one single guy and mash the circle button for an hour and hope that it leaves a bruise. The only way to do significant damage with this is to unleash the kinda stupid looking Chaos form. Of course, that thing can also shoot, and you only use it for limited amounts of time, so I guess in trying to make the melee system useful, Square just piled on something else that was completely useless. It's kind of like they know what logic is, but don't know the direction it's supposed to go in.
 
Fortunately, though, you won't spend most of the game using any of the shit I listed in the last paragraph. Instead, it's all guns. You get a pistol for when the other guns don't work, a machine gun for killing everything really quickly, a rifle for sniping, a....wait, that's it. OK, so the game doesn't have a wide array of weapons, but it makes up for it by allowing you to customize the hell out of them. You get tons of barrels, accessories, other types of accessories, and tons of other crap to shove onto your gun. Of course, all of this would be for naught if the scenarios in which you use the guns were all crap. Those of you expecting me to say just that should lick a wall socket so you'll know what shock feels like, because the sequences in this game are kind of cool. True, a lot of it is just gunning dudes down, but you'll also get to see them stuffed into boxes and die in a rail shooter segment near the end of the game. The only downside seems to be the bosses. Backwards logic strikes again, since they're usually worse than what the rest of the game offers. I could usually just aim my gun at them and just hold R1 and let the increasing damage take care of the rest. Not even the final boss is immune to this; I just stood in one place the entire time and did what I said one sentence ago. That's not how you're supposed to end a game, Square (possibly) Enix. You're supposed to use it to sum up the spirit of the game. You know how you could have done that best? Bring back that beast guy (not necessarily this one, but I'd fucking buy it), make him slightly challenging, and detach the entire fight from the rest of the plot.
 

Review Synopsis

  • Do I have to say that the story sucks?
  • Yet I do have to say that the gameplay is oddly competent yet schizophrenic.
  • Just use guns, and maybe magic. Nothing else is useful.
 
 
 
 
Anybody remember 2005? You know, the year when anime girls took to their Big Smokes and rebelled against their Terminator overlords?....What the fuck were we smoking six years ago?
  
  

Donkey Kong 64

( Eh, fuck the idea of a special banner.) For those of you confused by that statement (IE everybody reading this), let me clarify. Whenever I do one of these revisit blogs, I feel like I should make a special banner for it to alert you guys that I'm covering games that aren't super obscure. However, after recently finishing a banner for my next blog (it'll be #200), I feel like it would be too much work. Trust me, I know what the hell hard work is. After all, I beat Donkey Kong 64. Twice.
 
Why is that such a big thing? Simply put: there's a lot to do in this game. There are about eight levels to explore, and each one is the size of your average Grand Theft Auto game. Yes, it's impressive that Rare was able to stuff that much (along with all the other good things I could potentially say about the graphics) into a yellow piece of plastic, but eventually, these levels become a bit confusing to navigate. Part of it seems to be the level design itself; each level is a series of sub-levels connected by extremely dark hallways, so it's hard to get a feel for where the hell everything is. The warp pads strewn about kind of help, but I feel like Rare could have done more to make the levels less of a nightmare to explore. It's a shame, too, because again, there's a lot of cool shit to do in each level. There are tons of bananas to collect, smaller bananas to collect (Donkey Kong always was a bit of a junkie), (useless) battle crowns to collect, (eventually useless) coins to collect...I guess what I'm trying to say is that this game was specifically made for kleptomaniacs. Absolutely nothing in this game lacks any form of collecting. Hell, you can't even race without having to collect 50 coins for a Chaos E-golden banana. Stop making me hoard things, Donkey Kong 64! I know for a fact that you recognize this as a problem. At some point, you exhausted your golden banana ideas and decided to fill the remainder with "just stand here and do something" bananas. If you don't know what you'd do if Animal Planet's reality show people started interviewing all your friends, look at all the times you don't collect things. Pretty cool shit is going on in that time, like rabbit races, brief amounts of control over (non-monkey) animals, mini-games apparently programmed by the local county fair. Just do more of that.
 
 Do I have to say anything? It simply makes fun of itself.
Unfortunately, Rare misinterpreted "that" by giving you five playable Kongs. Not that it's all bad or anything; each Kong comes equipped with a bunch of cool abilities (once you buy them, of course), like shooting, playing instruments (I'd make a Jackson 5 joke, but I feel like that would be racist), and even some character exclusive ones. I'd tell you all the awesome stuff that they lead to, but I feel like I spoiled it with the earlier comments on rabbit races. However, if that wasn't enough, then how about jetpacks and invisibility and other cool stuff like that? I told you that there was a lot to do on the DK Isles, and a lot of it is fairly well executed. There's just one problem with it that I feel like I've already mentioned: the collectibles. Each Kong has their own set of collectibles that only they can collect, which (predictably) will make you quite familiar with the character select barrel. It gets especially bad when you're walking down a hallway of exclusively purple bananas, but red bananas suddenly interrupt the line. Now I have to walk all the way back to the nearest barrel to switch to Diddy or risk forgetting all these juicy bananas. That may not sound like much, but you need a lot of bananas to get through the game. By the end, you'll need 400 bananas to get the same high that 150 would get you a few hours ago. This wouldn't be too much of a problem is not for the flow-interrupting banana switch I mentioned earlier. What exactly does this add to the game....besides length?
 
I guess the only other answer to that question would be "bosses". Remember what I said about chasing that banana dragon earlier? Turns out that you need to do it to get to any of the bosses, meaning only one thing: Donkey Kong's bananas are filled with cocaine (I'm guessing that bananas are the Nintendo equivalent of condoms) and they're the only way he can gather enough strength to beat any of the bosses. That probably explains why they tend to fall on the easy side. Hell, not even the final boss, Wrestler K. Rool (I guess the only career below scientist is pro wrestler), is immune to this. The premise is that you fight him as each of the five Kongs, but with a special twist: "fight" is meant to be "repeat this one action four times." You'll shrink down, grow big, fly, launch yourself from barrels, and some fifth thing to defeat this once mighty King. Wait, I just figured something out: all of that is pretty awesome. The same goes for the other bosses, like Donald Duck in a jack in the box, or the Jafar battle from Kingdom Hearts. I guess the only major flaw with these bosses is that they're super easy.
 
I just realized that this blog is breaking tradition by not starting off with the story. Trust me when I say that bad things (like this blog) happen when I don't lead with the story. I'd probably say something like "let's get to correcting this", but the damage has already been done. Anyway, King K. Rool yet again wants Donkey Kong's bananas, and yet again, he has a plan to get them: capture all the Kongs except Donkey, and then....does absolutely nothing for the entire game. Wait, what? That's a terrible strategy! His previous plans started off by capturing Donkey Kong, so what the crap? Well, speaking of previous Donkey Kong games, neither Dixie nor Kiddie Kong make an appearance in this game. I can only assume that K. Rool had them killed in their sleep, so I guess that makes up for DK's lack of imprisonment. I'd go on about the story, but the only other thing of note is that there's a lovable idiot you try to free for the entire game. The rest of the story is just Rare charm (fourth wall humor, cute animals, decent music, etc) and mediocre voice acting. Don't believe me? Go watch the opening cutscene and tell me when the voice work matches the lip animations. And that's just the cutscenes. In the actual game, Donkey Kong spends half his time makign these oddly sexual grunts, like h....let's just wrap this up. So yea, that's Donkey Kong 64: a collect-a-thon platformer that would be pretty damn awesome if not for the collect-a-thon part. Excuse me while I use time travel to get the Rare from 2001 to usurp the Rare from 1999. What could possibly go wrong?
 

Review Synopsis

  • There's way too much crap to collect.
  • But there's also a lot of cool stuff to do.
  • Wow, that was a terrible blog. At least the title was accurate.
Posted by Bocam

CARLITO

Posted by mylifeforAiur

Lordy, the only thing I remember from Donkey Kong 64 is that I couldn't get the gold banana(?) from the damn Donkey Kong arcade machine.

Posted by Video_Game_King
@mylifeforAiur
 
So I guess you never beat the game (you need to beat the original DK twice to beat the game)?
Posted by theoldhouse

that shit was hard and retarded. 
 
Otherwise a great game but man...

Posted by Video_Game_King
@theoldhouse
 
What are you talking about specifically? I don't remember any of these games being especially hard.
Posted by mylifeforAiur

@Video_Game_King said:

@mylifeforAiur: So I guess you never beat the game (you need to beat the original DK twice to beat the game)?

I don't think I did. Actually, come to think of it, I've only finished one N64 game and I bet you can name it. It's not my fault; I only started getting into video games at about the time that the PS2 was ubiquitous. I try to go back, but video games have gotten so much better with time. That all said, I love Donkey Kong Country 2 a whole lot...so, that's something, right?

Edited by DocHaus
@Video_Game_King: I can't talk about Dirge of Cerberus without also linking to this hilarious LP of it. You were right in that Cutscene Vincent can destroy a chopper with a couple well-placed shots, but Gameplay Vincent requires you mash that shoulder button for several minutes. I think most FF fans will deny this game ever existed after one of them wished on a Monkey's Paw to have a video game based around Vincent (the other four wishes also ended in cruel ironic twists).
Posted by Video_Game_King
@DocHaus
 
Actually, it isn't as different as you make it out to be; while cutscene Vincent only requires a few well-placed shots, gameplay Vincent merely requires a billion. Again, the bosses in this game were a joke.
Posted by Hailinel

Dirge was fun. I played it when it came out and enjoyed despite its flaws. Honestly, the only part I found truly underwhelming was the joke of a final boss fight. I was happy that the game didn't spend too much time with characters other than Vincent, Yuffie was excellent comic relief (they even included reference to her sickness), and the new characters, while not the vest, were okay for an action game. (Though Shalua's character design is completely ridiculous.) I didn't find the voice acting that off, either. The game gets a lot of shit, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy it.

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Posted by Mento

Donkey Kong 64 is for platforming kleptomania as Disgaea (and its NIS ilk) are for strategy RPGs: It's either the bestest thing ever or the straw that finally broke the camel's back for that respective genre. Fitting, given that you do actually jump on a camel's back in DK64 as a 300 pound ape. You may well jump over sharks in one sequence too. Needless to say it's one of my favorite N64 games of all time. As long as I remember to skip the intro fast enough.
 
Everything I know about Dirge comes from reading the Let's Play by the goon who also covered all the Res Evils and Drakengards. I wonder how that guy stays sane.

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Posted by Video_Game_King
@Hailinel
 
What about the rest of the joke fights? I can't name a single boss battle that presented a decent challenge, or at least I can't remember any hard bosses. Also, for some reason, I took you to be the type of person who hated Dirge of Cerberus.
 
@Mento
 
I liked DK64 (although sure as hell not the blog for it), but have you played Conker's Bad Fur Day? That game managed to be better than Banjo Tooie, and that's no small feat.
 
I'm reading it right now, and it's pretty goddamn awesome. However, there is one thing about it that confuses me: am I the only one who doesn't know why there are so many holograms in the world of FF7? It's not even like Vincent's just hallucinating that Lucrecia's there; the game seems to make a strong case that yes, Weiss does sound like a high pitched dumbass because of some weird Internet plot twist or whatever.
Edited by vidiot

I was surprised how "not horrible" Dirge of Cerberus was.
Was it a shameless cash tie-in? Absolutely. Was the story incomprehensible at times? Yes. Did it annoy me that I'm seeing more of Yuffie and Reeve than Cloud? YEAH.
 
Strange localized cannibalized game-play, aside I actually really enjoyed the gun customization. It functions really well. I wish the gun sounds didn't sound like the weapons were under-water, but that's alright. Some of the later sections were really nice set-pieces for a PS2 game, I just wished the rest of the game had the same attention the end seemed to have. 

Posted by Mento
@Video_Game_King: Oddly, and this sounds kind of childish, I didn't like Conker's Bad Fur Day so much for removing almost all the kleptomania and turning it into more of a comedic sequence-based adventure game. I know I should prefer it to the collect-a-thons, in my defense, but there's something enjoyably cathartic about the DK/B&K system of mindlessly picking up items across the landscape that appeals to me more than jokes about operatic poop monsters and flower boobs. I know I'm weird. Most of the decent 3D platformers of today manage to properly balance the kleptomania and gameplay diversity though, which I appreciate.
 
I honestly don't think FF7 spinoffs are meant to have cohesive stories. They are basically shoehorning in characters and settings in a world you  painstakingly explored back in the original for every hidden item and materia (or at least I did), so the new stuff never seems to fit right. The only exception is Midgar, because you only get to see about 5% of that city in the original game before being permanently booted out.
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Posted by Video_Game_King
@Mento
 
Yes, that is odd. You should prefer shitting on villagers to trying to beat Canary Mary, like, three or four times.
 
Huh? Really? Wasn't the story the draw of Final Fantasy VII in the first place? It would be like Mega Man spin-offs completely ignoring the cool weapon system. Wait...
Posted by iam3green

donkey kong 64 was an awesome game. i remember the original game being in there. i could not get that banana though. it was kind of hard.
 
when you put the expansion pack into the n64, did the thing go flying out of it? i remember me and my brother putting the expansion pack in, the one in the n64 went flying out. my brother and i laughed about it.

Posted by Video_Game_King
@iam3green
 
Refer to earlier comments about not beating the arcade Donkey Kong. Also, I love how even after having been put in a major game for a (maybe) major system, nobody remembers Jetpac.
 
Actually, I can't remember. I put that thing in there long ago and never looked back.
Posted by Brodehouse

I remember that Jack in the Box boss from DK64 being the worst shit ever. I think that's where the game ended for me.

Posted by Loose
@Brodehouse said:

I remember that Jack in the Box boss from DK64 being the worst shit ever. I think that's where the game ended for me.

Heh. I was actually talking to a friend about this game last week and he said he stopped playing at the same spot.
Posted by Video_Game_King
@Brodehouse: @Loose
 
Here's a hint for you two: jump off the edge if his jumping gets too hard for you. You can stay on the recovery platform until the switches pop up, pretty much destroying half the bastard's attacks.
 
Personally, the boss that gave me the most shit was the fake K. Rool near the end. "I finally have you n-wait, where'd he go? Shit shit shit shit shit shit!" Kong lost, texture flaw noticed on the barrel (you didn't think they'd replace the question marks, did you?), boss hated.
Posted by Hargreaves93

That video at the end of the Dirge of Ceberus section was the craziest thing I have ever seen haha! Good read though!
Posted by Claude

I really don't remember that much about Donkey Kong 64. Until I read this blog, I forgot that there were different Kongs to play. All I remember is being overwhelmed with the world and collecting stuff, eventually growing bored and finally quitting. I've never played a Final Fantasy game, so there that is.

Posted by Video_Game_King
@Hargreaves93 said:

Good read though!

  
  
(Also, I've always considered the videos to be their own section. Specifically, the type that breaks up the blog into slightly more manageable bites.)
Posted by Hargreaves93

I've only just started reading your blogs but I just think they're well written and entertaining. And like you said the videos do well the break it up into more manageable bites.
Posted by Video_Game_King
@Hargreaves93
 
I was referring more to this specific entry, but whatever.
 
@Claude said:

I've never played a Final Fantasy game, so there that is.

Fix this mistake. Now. Even if it has to be Dirge of Cerberus or The After Years, go fix it.
Posted by Guided_By_Tigers

You have realized that titles of this nature get people to click on the topic and having controversial opinions gets them to respond, I am proud of you bud.....and the second review isn't filler this time.

Posted by Video_Game_King
@Unknown_Pleasures
 
Actually, I only do it when people point out that the blog before it was controversial. Consider it a short-lived "might as well run with it" attitude. Besides, I didn't think that people actually liked Dirge of Cerberus. Combine that with the last blog, and you can see why I thought the title would come true (and not in the way that it eventually did).
Posted by Hailinel

@Video_Game_King said:

@Hailinel:

What about the rest of the joke fights? I can't name a single boss battle that presented a decent challenge, or at least I can't remember any hard bosses. Also, for some reason, I took you to be the type of person who hated Dirge of Cerberus.

@Mento: I liked DK64 (although sure as hell not the blog for it), but have you played Conker's Bad Fur Day? That game managed to be better than Banjo Tooie, and that's no small feat. I'm reading it right now, and it's pretty goddamn awesome. However, there is one thing about it that confuses me: am I the only one who doesn't know why there are so many holograms in the world of FF7? It's not even like Vincent's just hallucinating that Lucrecia's there; the game seems to make a strong case that yes, Weiss does sound like a high pitched dumbass because of some weird Internet plot twist or whatever.

The game wasn't hard, but I wouldn't classify all of the boss fights as jokes. Nero was, from what I recall, at least tense, and the fight with Rosso was made difficult by my weapon situation. Granted, the game was not particularly taxing, particularly with the way Phoenix Down works in the game, but I wouldn't go so far as to call the entire roster of bosses a joke.

And why would I hate this game?

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Posted by Video_Game_King
@Hailinel
 
Nero only gave you trouble when you got close to him (remember, this is a game where you kill things with a weapon that only works at a distance), and while Rosso was one of the few times I actually used a Limit Breaker, I still didn't find her particularly challenging.
 
I remember you saying a one-off comment about it not being good or something in another blog, although I feel like I'm probably misremembering it and am too lazy to dig up said blog :P.
Posted by Hailinel

@Video_Game_King said:

@Hailinel: Nero only gave you trouble when you got close to him (remember, this is a game where you kill things with a weapon that only works at a distance), and while Rosso was one of the few times I actually used a Limit Breaker, I still didn't find her particularly challenging. I remember you saying a one-off comment about it not being good or something in another blog, although I feel like I'm probably misremembering it and am too lazy to dig up said blog :P.

I may have said that it's not necessarily the best game out there, but also that it's one that I enjoyed. I have never stated that I hated the game in any way.

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