These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things – Episode 10

Been a while since I’d done one of these, so I figured I’d take another crack at it. There’s no real relation between these and while there are spoilers, I don’t think it’s anything we haven’t seen already as the gamer populace, so no worries there. Ultimately, these are things that make you laugh, smile, or in general just plain enjoy when a design studio comes together to create something wonderful.

Okage – Shadow King – The Introduction of Stan

Okage is a game that, sadly though for obvious reasons, many of us probably haven’t played. It’s not a very GOOD game, but it is funny and definitely has its moments. It’s a very early PS2 RPG that tried to make good use of the tech, but kinda failed and is very mediocre in many respects. However, the one thing that sells this game is Stan, a demon of sorts that possesses your shadow and is a total sarcastic ass.

You call upon him because your sister has been afflicted with the nefarious pig latin curse (…yeah) where she can only speak in pig latin. He heals her…but turns her shadow pink in the process and only on the stipulation that he might possess your shadow forever. And thus begins your journey. Yes, it’s very strange, but holy damn is it funny. While the game itself is nothing special, Stan makes the journey worth it.

Wild Arms 3 – How It All Comes Together

Wild Arms has always been an interesting series that’s had a lot of interesting ideas, though not all of them good. However, WA3 starts with the interesting idea of throwing a bunch of characters together in a Mexican standoff of sorts, then pausing the action and letting you get each character’s basic backstory as far as the events that led up to being on the train in the first place.

It’s almost the reverse of what happened in the raft scene in Final Fantasy 6 and I love this game for it. Not only does it teach you many concepts you will need to know when playing the game, but it does so without being boring, allows you to select whatever order you’d like to play the scenarios in, and has genuinely interesting characters to explore as a result.

Sure, the game kinda slows down after that, but ultimately it’s still very fun for at least the first 10 hours, which is a lot more than I can say for some modern RPGs.

Mass Effect 2 – Suicide Mission

Mass Effect 2 is easily one of the top 10 best Western RPGs I’ve played to date and this is one of the main reasons why. Every decision counts, every excursion into your characters’ backstories matters, every little niggling detail is relevant…because otherwise people close to you will DIE. And often, they will die HORRIBLY.

What really makes this work is as RPGers we’re often doing all kinds of side missions, but mostly for the experience points, further story development, etc. And you still get that, but you also get the satisfaction of knowing that it was worth way more than just that. It’s not just some ultimate weapon or a few more abilities; you get to save your crew and are ensured the ability to wipe out an ominous alien race.

Very few games are able to make this claim, often opting for you to do side missions just because they said so with very little payoff. ME2 really makes it count and really forces you to evaluate your decisions in this high stakes scenario.

Shadow Hearts – From The New World – Frank

Shadow Hearts has always been a weird series, but it doesn’t get much weirder than an American ninja who talks with a thick European accent, dresses in a very odd ninja outfit that has a lit angler antenna, says really odd things in general, and fights with the most bizarre weapons possible. For example, he starts with a giant sawblade, but eventually fights with a wide variety of things stuck on the end of his hilt such as a giant cactus, a bus stop sign, a giant fish, a mortar firework, and plenty of other odd, but hilariously awesome weapons.

While this isn’t the best Shadow Hearts game, it is one of the funniest (if not THE funniest) and deserves to be experienced by all. Frank is easily the star of the show often saying the funniest shit and being the biggest parody of a ninja I can possibly think of.

Deadly Premonition – F…K in the Coffee

Deadly Premonition is a game that starts off bizarre…and only gets moreso. At first, you think it’s just a generic survival horror game and that’s all there is to it…then you’re treated to this scene and it becomes obvious that it’s oh so much more. Absolutely everything in this game is hilarious. The fact that it’s so cheap is just icing on the cake. No words can describe this scene…I really mean that.

Conclusion

And that’s that. I look forward to doing more of these in the future, but obviously it will come at the cost of my gamer time, so updates may be more sporadic. It also doesn’t help that I’m still sick. All the same, hopefully I can update more often from here on out. Thanks for the read!

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Filed under PC, PS2, PS3, Retro, Sony, These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things, Videogames, X Box 360

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