Category Archives: Reviews

Reviews of either games or products.

Everything

Everything is a PC game available on Steam, PS4, and Switch. Dang, I thought it was just Steam. This is a game that I had gotten through a bundle, so I only paid $1 for it. Typically it goes for $14. …And 99 cents, of course.

You start the game as what I’m assuming is a star. You have a few thoughts, pondering your existence, possibly pondering why you even bought this game (provided you didn’t receive it for free) and next thing you know, you’re a somersaulting donkey. Or whatever other unfortunate mammal you spawned as.

Shortly after, you are told that the apocalypse will happen in 541251 seconds. Which I’m sure is meaningless. Would be cool if the game just stopped after 541251 seconds though!

So, you wander around for a bit. The game spouts some cryptic crap about how wherever you’re going is the right path, you’ll find what you’re looking for. Which I’m sure is the game’s way of saying you’ll progress no matter what direction you choose. You travel around, listen to some thought bubbles, and as you progress, you gain new abilities. Like singing. Ever heard a donkey sing before? Trust me, you don’t want to. Then you get the ability to call other animals to join you. Next thing you know, you’re a herd of singing, somersaulting donkeys. Or whatever other unfortunate mammal you spawned as.

As you progress even further, you unlock the ability to descend and ascend, because let’s face it: We’ve all wanted to see life’s perspective from something other than a donkey. Like… Grass!

Basically, you can become just about any object in the game. Just about. Y NO MOON?!

I was honestly impressed by how many types of grass you can become. Seriously, there’s a lot of grass. You can also become a tree!

As you switch between objects, plants, and mammals, the game keeps track of what percentage of that group you have become. And oh boy are there a lot! I only played a half-hour of this game, but from watching the trailer, there seem to be many different biomes you can visit and objects you can capture. There’s also this audio clip of some guy talking about how we see someone and identify them as people because they look like people to us. Basically cryptic crap like that. And a lot of it. Seriously, he does not shut up.

Personally, I don’t think it’s worth the $14. There’s some clever dialogue, a few humorous quips, but overall, it’s not very entertaining. But if this is something that appeals to you, go ahead. Become a herd of dancing trees, sing with the grass, experience I the way others experience I, because there are other Is being born as we speak. At the end of the day:

PS5 Console Review

I got my PS5 a while back in January 2021. I was one of the lucky few who managed to snag one pretty early on, thanks to having Twitter notifications on full blast, waking me up for a chance at adding one to the cart. Not even purchasing! I managed to get one after staring at the Best Buy page for a good fifteen minutes, contemplating why I was even doing this. Just then, my self-pity paid off! It came back in stock, and I lost my Best Buy password! To this day, I still don’t know how I had time to reset my password and buy the stupid console. I ended up getting the console bundled with Spider-Man because I had heard that you have a better chance at a bundle since most people only wanted the console, which was expensive enough as it was.

I hadn’t even planned on getting the PS5 for another year or two. A friend had messaged me that Walmart’s preorders went up earlier than they were supposed to, and I passed thinking I would get it once games I was actually interested released. Cough, Final Fantasy 16 cough. But then I had this idea of giving my PS4 to my PS4-less boyfriend. Thus started my PS5 journey that I honestly can’t complain about considering many people had it worse than me.

So, I spent two weeks desperately trying to get a PS5. Yeah, only two weeks compared to people who spent several MONTHS trying to get one. As I said, I’m not going to complain. But this just shows how much hype the PS5 had. But how did the PS5 stack up to these expectations?

No console launch goes perfect, but on top of the overwhelmingly short supply, the PS5 is… quite fragile. And I don’t mean physically. That did get me wondering though: How far can you drop a PS5? Unfortunately, the only video I found on this was dropping it down a spiral staircase and my question was more so would it survive a four-foot drop. I did find an article about someone who dropped it from 15 feet though!

Bottom line, guys, don’t drop your PS5.

But no. The PS5 launched and there was this sort of… error that a lot of people had reported. A lot. It made headlines. What was this error? Well, it would brick the entire system making games literally unplayable. At the time, people thought it was Spider-Man causing the brick. Great, the one game I bought with it. Then it seemed to be more specifically, putting the PS5 in rest mode WHILE playing Spider-Man. And then eventually putting the PS5 in rest mode during any game. From what I can tell, this has since been patched in a system update, but out of fear, I never put my PS5 in rest mode while playing games, which makes the rest mode feature for me, useless.

Even though the PS5 launched like this, it was still a good console. You just had to know ahead of time not to do this one very specific thing or you would have wasted several hundred dollars and a lot of time. I have to say, the biggest thing about the PS5 for me is the controller. This definitely feels like the PlayStation’s most durable controller. It has a nice weight to it and a nice size. A HUGE difference from the PS3’s controller that feels like a toy, and even quite a big difference from the PS4 controller. I love the new rumble feature and the adaptive triggers. Pulling back the trigger when readying a bow will now feel more realistic, as there’s an actual struggle when pressing the trigger.

The speed of the console is another huge improvement. Games will only take an hour, maybe two to download as opposed to four or eight. Updates that would take an hour or two on the PS4 now only take five to ten minutes. Loading in games is also much shorter. Final Fantasy 14 is a great example of this, as teleports are almost instantaneous.

That being said, there’s a lot about the PS5 that I DON’T like. I don’t like this new home screen menu layout. Everything is controlled by either the circle stick or D-Pad, which I guess is supposed to mean the transition is more seamless because it’s buttonless? But it actually feels a lot more clunky to me. Navigating to and through the PS Store is a pain. You navigate to the left to get to the store, then you have to press (or tilt) down to enter the store, just to immediately go back up to get to the store menu. And if you’re like me, you end up clicking up twice and now you’re back out of the store! I also don’t understand why there’s a whole separate tab for Media. I guess in reality it doesn’t look much more different than the PS4, but something about it feels more overwhelming.

Another issue I have is that the game doesn’t confirm that you want to quit the current game you’re playing to play another when another game is selected. This is especially infuriating when you misclick on the menu and your MMO with a one thousand player queue gets closed suddenly.

There’s also like this sub-menu that pops up whenever you press the home button. This is the only way you can turn off or put your PS5 in rest mode! Nope, not on the home screen but through this sub-menu. Also, for whatever reason, the PS5’s default setting is to have the microphone on whenever you turn on your PS5. This can be turned off in the settings, but it’s kind of weird to have this setting as a default… Nothing like turning on Fortnite or Call of Duty and forgetting your mic is unmuted as you crunch on those cheese puffs. Or when your neighbors are yelling.

But those are just minor complaints. The PS5 runs really well. For the most part.

Weeks and months after initially getting the console, I started coming across more errors. For whatever reason, Whenever I unplug my PS5 (when it’s off, thank you very much) it starts having a ton of internet connectivity problems, Sometimes it won’t connect at all, or other times the lag will make online games unplayable. There was a time when for nearly two weeks I couldn’t play online games because the connection was just that bad. While I’m sure I’m probably one of the only people to have this very specific problem of unplugging the system and it not connecting, I know for a fact that I’m not the only one who has connection issues with this console. Plenty of Reddit posts complain about poor connection or no connection at all, and plenty of YouTube videos out there explain potential fixes for these problems.

But the internet isn’t the only thing that doesn’t always connect. For whatever reason, the Dual Sense controller randomly decides to drop connection with the console. It glows a weird blue, but not much else. The only way to fix this is by getting up and turning the console off manually, and turning it back on. I’ve had this issue several times now, each time more annoying than the last. And once again, I’m not the only person with this issue.

While the connection issues can get aggravating, they typically don’t happen often enough to make the console unplayable. All of the other little flaws can be overlooked as well, considering how smooth this console runs MOST of the time. I do think these issues will be fixed in later revisions of the console, such as the inevitable Pro and Slim models. Overall, this console might be a bit bumpy in places, but I do think it’s a great console that will get better in time.

Play has no limits. Except for console availability and stable connections. 

Wrongworld: Better Than Minecraft?

IT’S TIME TO MEET YOUR MATCH, MINECRAFT!

For so long, Minecraft has sat pretty, dominating all other crafting survival games. It was king. Is now the time that Minecraft FINALLY meets its match?!

Yes. Yes it is.

No, not Terraria! Nobody cares about that! I’m talking about something… bigger. Something bigger than all of us. More importantly, something bigger than Minecraft.

Wrongworld.

Wrongworld takes survival games to the next level. It takes the very WORD survival to the next level.

You don’t see Minecraft showing up in the dictionary.

But what makes this game better than Minecraft? Is it the furry texture that Minecraft could only DREAM of having without mods? Is it its captivating plot? The beloved story of a hero stranded on the wrong world? Is it the friggin’ moon?!

Man, look at that moon.

Yes, yes, and yes. Wrongworld’s furry hero braves the unknown world, the wrong world, fighting… whatever the heck these enemies are supposed to be that make noises that surely won’t send a shiver down your spine!

Taken from the Steam store page.

Does Wrongworld have biomes? Heck yeah it has biomes! Grassland, deserts, snowfields, whatever this dead looking area is supposed to be! It’s got them all! Who cares that Minecraft has more when Wrongworld does it BETTER?

Not to mention you can build an actual house. No more stacking random blocks together to make it LOOK like a house. This game’s got walls!

And I gotta tell you. The minigames? Ingenious. You can fight enemies in a boxing ring to win prizes! There’s also that one area where you have to move letters around to make the Wrongworld sign! I think! I mean, I totally know the answer. I’m just not going to TELL you because you should play it for yourself. I totally wouldn’t forget. That would be irresponsible of me.

You can craft houses, weapons, farming tools, even a greenhouse! What other games let you craft a greenhouse? Wrongworld clearly goes above and beyond the call of duty. SOMEONE GIVE THIS GAME AN OSCAR!

Anyway, that’s Wrongworld. You should check it out.

Tales of Arise: is it Good?

Tales of Arise is a JPRG that released September 10th 2021, on all systems that you can realistically imagine. And not the Switch (key word is realistic!). It features main character Alphen liberating the realms of Dahna from the oppressive rule of the Renans. Ironically enough, I had just finished my first playthrough of Xillia when this released, so I decided to put off trying Arise. That was totally the reason and not my Final Fantasy XIV addiction, nope. How does this game stack up to other Tales games? How is the story? Is it worth playing?

Oh yeah. It’s worth playing. Minor spoilers ahead!

Starting a new game, you’re greeted with a long monologue worthy of Final Fantasy XII. I’m not a fan of games that spend several minutes explaining their plot to you before you even start the game. Next, you are greeted by some pretty nice visuals. The best the Tales series has seen. It may not be on par with other triple A games such as Horizon, Elden Ring, or even the new Rachet and Clank, but they’re definitely pleasant. The visuals become even more spectacular throughout the various realms you visit, especially with the minimal UI approach this game has taken.

Tales of Arise has you journeying across the five realms of Dahna, each with their own geological theme. It makes each area feel very fresh, even if the game remains very linear. I was hoping Arise would incorporate more of an open world approach, or at the very least, seamless transitions between the maps. The world however remains very linear, and it gets quite frustrating any time you hit an invisible wall. The gameplay however, remains very smooth. Definitely the smoothest in the series. You are no longer locked to running in very specific directions, and free run is a thing of the past. In fact, you could say the entire battle is free run. Artes are now shortcutted to buttons, and eventually holding down L2 (or ZL) along with those buttons when you gain more arte slots. Artes are no longer restricted to the direction you tilt your stick. It actually plays similar to most modern RPGS. This also makes dodging much easier.

My only problem with this new battle system is CP. Unlike most Tales games, this game does not have an MP system. Instead, offensive spells use AG, and can be used however many times you’d like so long as you have enough AG (which recovers). CP is consumed whenever a healing spell is cast. And the only way to recover CP is by using consumables (which are very expensive early on, and you can’t even buy them until you have reached the third realm) or staying at inns/resting at campfires. Because of this, I found myself fighting only the enemies that were necessary to progress. If I accidentally stumbled across an enemy with low CP, I would do my best to fight it, or outright flee if given the option. In dungeons, I would make a small amount of progress before teleporting out to rest at an inn and then teleporting back in, making dungeons last forever.

The CP system also made early boss fights very painful to fight. Literally for our heroes. I would actually consider the first boss to be one of the hardest bosses in the game. Resources are very limited, so you have to rely on getting perfect guards and perfect dodges. The early bosses are also very difficult, especially due to the AI. I had to mess with AI settings quite a bit because they would just not stop dying. So many times I had to solo a boss because it was easier to do that than constantly heal/rez my party back up. Granted, Tales games have historically been hard at the beginning and relatively easy at the end, which has always irked me. Halfway through the game I made the decision to main Shionne for bosses because I could not trust this AI’s healing.

But who IS Shionne? Who is anyone? That brings us to our characters. Alphen, Shionne, Rinwell, Law, Kisara, and Dohalim in that order. Alpehn is our main protagonist. He goes by the name Iron Mask early in the game. He wears a mask that prevents him from remembering his past and feeling pain. Literally. Even if he is immune to pain, he is still capable of dying.

Shionne is the second character we meet in this game. She is what is assumed to be a noble fleeing her homeworld Rena, and is eventually captured on Dahna. Shionne is under a strange curse referred to as “thorns”. Anyone who touches her is in for a sharp pain, which is why so many are interested in her. Shionne also manages to be the most annoying character in the game, if not the series, even rivaling Luke fon Fabre from Abyss. She doesn’t care about anyone or anything other than defeating the Renan lords who rule over Dahna. She’s very blunt and makes a lot of snarky comments throughout the game. She picks fights for no reason, and sometimes leads the party into danger because of her hotheadedness. Seriously, there were many times I had to take a break from this game just because of how annoying she was.

Next is Rinwell, a Dahnan capable of using astral artes (I’ll get to this in a bit). She also has a hatred for Renans after they killed her parents. I don’t have a problem with Rinwell so much as the timing of when she was introduced. Because Shionne is a Renan, Rinwell does not take kindly to her (that makes two of us!). Shionne being the ass she is, will provoke Rinwell with snarky comments, both intentionally and unintentionally. For a couple areas in the game, it’s just the two of them going back and forth each setting the other one off. Makes for a very annoying journey.

Next we have Law. Law is the son of one of Alphen’s friends. He’s a martial artist who also functions as the comic relief character. I was happy to see that they didn’t immediately shaft him after introducing him. Law never really gets any big moments in the game, and he definitely gets the least amount of screen time out of everyone, but he’s overall a very enjoyable character who evens out Shionne and Rinwell.

Next are Kisara and Dohalim, who join at almost the same time. When Kisara was introduced, she was very forgettable, but becomes one of the more prominent characters as the game continues. Dohalim is a lord of one of the realms. Unlike the other lords, he treats Renans and Dahnans relatively equal. Dohalim’s screen time tends to fluctuate more than any other character in my opinion. He starts out very strong, but once he joins your party you almost never see a lot of him until near the end of the game. Which is a shame because he is such a well written character.

In fact, all of these characters are well written. Even Shionne (to an extent). This is where things get different from other Tales games. Instead of focusing on having an over-the-top story, this game focuses on developing its characters. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But because of this, the story starts to become easily predictable and relies on a lot of tropes and cliches. Of course there are a couple of things here and there that are shocking, but for the most part, the game tends to feel like you’re going from point A, to point B, to point C, etc.

The Renans have been using the Dahnans as slaves for the past 300 years to collect something known as astral energy for their “Crown Contest.” Astral energy is what allows people to use magic. Renans are the only people capable of using astral artes (magic), with the exception of Rinwell who comes from a long line of Dahnan mages. Despite this, Dahnans are still able to collect astral energy by activities such as mining, building, working, etc. The Renan lords take part in the Crown Contest, a competition for gathering astral energy. The lord who can gather the most astral energy will be crowned the Sovereign, ruler of all of Rena.  Alphen and Shionne team up to defeat the five lords of Dahna. Alphen to free the slaves, and Shionne for her own motives. This style of storytelling leads to your story becoming very predictable.

Like I said, the storytelling was toned down to focus on character development. You and Alphen discover his memories together, which lead to him feeling like a fully fleshed out character, not some generic RPG protagonist. Shionne’s blunt rudeness is also explained by her traumatic past. Rinwell’s anger is quelled when she realizes her hate leads her to be no different from the Renans who are oppressing Dahna. Law learns to cope with the mistakes of his past. Dohalim has his own skeletons in his closet, and goes from being what some might consider a coward, to a strong ruler. Kisara is a bit of a tricky one… Her development is more vague, but the story allows you to see all these different sides to her. Her motherly side to the cast, her passion for fishing, and her overcoming her weaknesses.

Tales of Arise is a very enjoyable experience, and perhaps one of the best Tales games for new fans to start with. The revamped battle system makes it easier than ever to jump in. While the story might be lackluster in some areas compared to past games, its simplicity is still enjoyable. You have a cast of characters who grow and develop on their journey, and characters you hated before are now endearing to you. All of this mixed with stunning animation and incredible music makes this journey a must.