Ni no Kuni

The gorgeous world of Ni No Kuni

The gorgeous world of Ni No Kuni

Hayao Miyazaki’s a genius! I just recently spent a weekend re-watching “My Neighbour Totoro”, “Spirited Away” and “Princess Mononoke” which got me thinking about Ni no Kuni, a game that is currently being developed by Level-5 (the makers of Dragon Quest VIII, Rogue Galaxy & the recent White Knight Chronicles). Based on what I’ve seen so far. I’m like… Wow. Ni no Kuni is one beautiful game and the best part of it is that it features character designs and animated sequences by Studio Ghibli themselves.

The main protagonist Oliver & his magical friend

The main protagonist Oliver & his magical friend

The Nintendo DS is definitely the best platform for RPGs right now and there’s a tonne of stuff to play; which is great! I am so looking forward to Ni no Kuni and am currently waiting for my copy of Dragon Quest IX which my colleague helped order off Play-Asia. If Ni no Kuni has the same charm as a Studio Ghibli movie then I’m pretty sure the game’ll be a hit in Japan. It’ll be a welcome addition to my small but solid library of DS games.

The beautiful world of Ni no Kuni

The beautiful world of Ni no Kuni

For more on Ni no Kuni check out the Japanese trailer that was released at TGS o9′.

Advertisements

Ready, Steady, GO!

Sony's PSPgo.

Sony's PSPgo.

The Sony PSPgo has just launched and it’s gonna be one pricey portable. I love the way it looks but the price point would make most people think twice about getting one. The one major thing that I like about the device is its slide-out controls that make the whole thing compact. I wonder when I’ll be able to see one here in Malaysia? Hmmm… maybe it’s here already cos’ PS3 Slim units got in pretty early. But I digress, today’s post is not about the PSPgo but rather it’s about portable gaming habits & preferences.

After gaming for years I’ve come to a realisation that the games that I really get into on a portable are very different compared to what I play on their bigger cousins. So what is it that I like to play on my Nintendo DSi? Well, I’ve figured out that pick up & go games make for great additions to my library. Why? Here are a few reasons why I prefer arcade-styled games on a portable:

  1. They are easy to pick up & put down for small bouts of gaming.
  2. Short games are great for times when I’m waiting for someone or something to start.
  3. It doesn’t take a lot of time to complete a level.
  4. Near infinite replayability because you main objective usually is to break a high score.

My all-time favourite game right now is Metroid Prime: Pinball! It’s a great pick up & play game and you get hours and hours of fun with it. There are loads of micro game modes within the pinball levels that include shoot em’ up-styled bits and even boss fights. It’s a great game that comes bundled with a rumble pak for that added zing for those of you who are still on the older Nintendo DS or DS Lite.

Metroid Prime: Pinball. Really good fun.

Metroid Prime: Pinball. Really good fun.

Here’s a full list of games that make my Top 5 Chart.

  1. Metroid Prime: Pinball
  2. Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords
  3. Disgaea DS
  4. Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
  5. Animal Crossing: Wild World

What kinda games do you play on your portable? Drop me a line cos’ I’d love to hear from some of ya out there. Comments please!

New Video Games & So MUCH More

Wow … I’ve decided to finally do a bit more blogging this year especially in the wake of all the new things that have been happening in my life. PLUS not just a boatload but a shitload of video game updates.

It’s 8:26pm now. I’ve not had dinner and have been going at Puzzle Quest on my Nintendo DS for the past 2 hours or so I think. Last I remember it was 6:30pm and had just climbed a top my loft bed. I played & played till the battery on my DS died and so I’ve been forced out of my Puzzle Quest! Ha ha! I’m hungry now so I better go scrounge out some food. Looks like it’s gonna be good old “sambal-flavoured” Indomie! Yums! My absolute favourite.

Some gaming updates! My brother & I picked up a Nintendo Wii last month and it’s been good fun. We’ve even gotten our dad hooked on it; it’s mostly the tennis mini-game in Wii Sports though. I picked up a copy of Super Paper Mario too but haven’t dug my teeth into that game properly yet. The bundle came with Marvel Ultimate Alliance which was pretty OK and even though I wasn’t too impressed at first I found myself going back to it again & again for more mindless beat em’ up action.

I’ve also been picking up lots of original PS2 titles whenever I visit Singapore and am the proud owner of quite a few titles. I’m particularly pleased with Guitar Hero II which is super good fun. Since I play the guitar pretty OK, getting through the game is quite alright but am stuck on the Hard setting which requires a lot of dexterity. The Expert setting almost killed me and made me feel like I suck at guitar (I don’t in real life)! Ha ha!

On a more serious note, things are picking up for me. Being able to blog again is good since it must mean that I’m not feeling too depressed anymore. 2-and-a-half years of pining for one girl certainly takes its toll on a person. I’ve started a new music label with Juwita called Four Forty Records, I’ve been meeting many local celebrities in my work and my cell group in church is really growing. Things are picking up definitely and just recently I’ve decided to just forget her and move on with my life. It’s hard having to stop loving someone who has chosen to ignore all that’s good about you in favour of someone else whom you know doesn’t match up in so many ways to you but that’s just life. I honestly don’t know how I can be friends with her again but I guess I’ll just have to leave it to God to work that out. Right now it’s time to glue back all the pieces of my broken heart and to enjoy what God is blessing me with in the here and now.

I’ve gotten a Sony Ericsson K750i but Blogger doesn’t have that much space for pix. I’ll have to figure out how to get more space so I can put up pix of my room and also all the video game stuff that I’ve gotten in the past 2 years. In addition to that I’ve been to lots of places too! And also I wanna give everyone on the World Wide Web a glimpse into the always exciting & never dull moments of my life (it can get tedious but I must say that’s it’s always interesting!).

I’ll drop a post sometime tomorrow I guess. Time to look into how to get more webspace for pictures!

Cheers!

Cheap XBOX!

I just got a call from my buhd over at Gamester Direct in 1U about a sweet deal for an under-played XBOX for just RM800! If I could afford it I’d probably get one but as it is I’ve already made my one brand new console purchase for the year already. Yes … I must admit now that I have gotten me a brand new NINTENDO DS and it’s still not even a month old. Anyway if anyone of you are interested in the XBOX just head on over to Gamester Direct in 1U and ask Eddie at the shop. Tell em’ you read about it on Chris Leow’s blog. The XBOX package contains the following:

  • 2 S-controllers (the smaller sized XBOX controllers not the clunky ones)
  • 2 original games (Halo 1 & Star Wars: Clone Wars)
  • 150 “other” games
  • The XBOX unit itself plus the cables (TV, power cable, etc)

I’m not too sure what colour it is though so if check it out if any of you out there are interested. It’s a pretty sweet deal I must say! Meanwhile I gotta get back to my DS … I’ve been playing with it a whole lot more than my GameCube or my PS2. The touch screen on that baby brings a unique flavour to gaming and I must say I’ve been having loads of fun playing Kirby: Canvas Curse and just recently acquired a copy of Meteos too which I have yet to spend much time on.

Long live NINTENDO!

The PSP, DS & RE4 Edge

I am so hyped over the newly released Resident Evil 4 for the Nintendo GameCube. The major online video game sites have had nothing but good things to say about it. The visuals, the gameplay and the exquisitely cinematic presentation just increases the anticipated arrival of my copy. My regular supplier unfortunately can only get it in on the 17th which fortunately isn’t that far away. I already have visions of crazed villagers being shot by Leon S. Kennedy dancing in front of my eyes. Man … I wish I had a bigger TV to contain all that graphical mayhem.

On another note, I’ve been splurging on video game magazines this week and bought 3 issues of Edge. It is by far the best gaming publication I have ever read. The articles are thought provoking and well written. It is THE publication to read if you want to get a grasp of REAL issues in the video game design community. Check it out at http://www.edge-online.com. The layouts are nice and there’s a design sense to them that should intrigue some of you designers out there.

I’ve been drooling over the PSP and Nintendo DS. The graphics on the PSP is amazing. Crisp graphics on the largest screen I’ve ever seen on a portable. On the other hand the DS’ touch screen has tons of possibilities. It’s still too early to get one as the software lineup is still kinda poor. The sexy graphics on the PSP makes it very appealing but the battery life reportedly is horrible compared to the solid 10 hours you get out of the DS. Oh well … it’s not like I can afford either at the moment anyway.

So ends my token blog post to start the new year. Yeah yeah yeah … I know it’s already 13 days into the new year but this is my first blog post of 2005. I’m such a slacker.