Sunday, May 16, 2010

The 7th Saga (part 2)

After a weeks worth of vacation, I decided it was time to jump back into that saddle again. Yes, yes, the saddle of no choice role-playing. Ah, but I promised you something, did I not? Behold! The Whomp before Whomps:

Does he look familiar? When I first encountered these statues, my thoughts immediately went back to one of my favorite games (and, indeed, many others') on my favorite game console ever: Super Mario 64. C'mon! You remember what Whomps are, don't you? The second level? Oh, fine, here:

Okay, maybe they're just a scared cousin, but I'm onto you Nintendo. >: |

Alright, so, as we follow DINGB we will encounter monsters, who will engage us in battle. Fights in 7th Saga occur in a turn-based fashion, as you and your enemy take turns beating each other over the head waiting for the lesser man to fall. Of course, to speed up the process you have magical spells and abilities to aid you... Unless you're a big giant walking statue who's got about as much magical ability as a paper clip.

I wasn't sure what else to do in battle, so I just spammed my attack command. And lucky for me, half the time every enemy dodges. Fun. I like mechanics that prolong time with endless streams of monsters and creatures attempting to take my face off in one fell wallop. But I can dodge too, just not at the right times or when I'm low on health. No, it only occurs when I'm fighting against that early level enemy who won't do shit to me anyway. A guy in the first city tells you that to increase my odds of survival I should defend first, then attack. After refusing to acquiesce to his request to be a pussy, I proceeded headstrong into attacking always. After getting stuck for sometime in one area I consulted a walk-through at *cough* GameFAG's and found out that defending first does indeed help marginally. Not only does it decrease the damage the first attack on you does, it also increases your next attack damage by a substantial amount. Whoa ho ho! Fuck, they dodged that attack.

A few big things about roaming the over-world and dungeons: the king gives you a magic crystal ball that not only points out runes to you, but also shows the locations of enemies, and consequently giving you the power to choose, to some degree, when a random battle will occur. They like to make you think that you can zip past enemies with ease, but in a grind happy game as 7th Saga that won't always be the case; another feature that's very cool, albeit in gameplay terms useless, is the battle transition. It is easier to show you rather than to explain it, so I put together a quick GIF of it for you:

It's a pretty cool scene changer, utilizing Mode 7 effects to place you into a battle that feels like it is indeed happening on the grainy, horrid tile sets being passed off as sand, grass, water, and rock.

Now, venturing off into the world for the first time, alone (as not depicted by the GIF) and without help, did well for quite a while. I had read up a bit on the sudden difficulty spikes in the game, so I spent a fair bit of time battling and levelling, gaining money and the few spells promised to my guy. (I have a fucking laser man!) I was able to infiltrate a castle and stop a monster-demon-thing from killing people. Turns out that guy over there (----}) is the dog of a king who died. Down, boy. I got to use my laser on him and destroy him into nothingness. His largest attack damage on me was literally like fifteen health points. I was riding high, on cloud nine, you know, eating the biggest meatball. Visited a few more cities not really doing much of anything, progressing into other, harder enemies nicely, until I came upon!

Damn you, Cthulhu, damn you! He did two hundred or so damage in one single swipe and erased me from the world in the aforementioned one fell wallop. NoooooOoOoOooOoOoo, I said, like Darth Vader finding out Padme had died. NoooooOoOoOooOoOoo, DINGB, not my perfect game!

So, anyway, I transported back to a temple in the nearest town, with gritty determination to defeat this madman. I turned on Eye of the Tiger and started a montage. Unfortunately, DINGB doesn't allow flash photography, as it throws him into a jealous rage. (Don't ask to explain it, you'll just get more confused as to why I didn't take pictures.) Another hour into grinding (not anywhere near the area where he showed up) and I decided it was time. I cranked up my music and went back to the area where we last fought and I found his bitch ass, ripe for the cracking. (oic wat u did der...)

It was a heated battle, lasting almost two minutes, two sweaty minutes, two heart-pounding, gut-wrenching minutes, two -- alright you get the point. I pwn'd him, only to find he was called a 'despair' and only gave me a lousy 220 experience, which was decent enough, but not worth the raping he had done on me from the front. God, just remembering that pisses me off, I've got to go kill shit now! Argh!

Next time will not be a week, I promise, so catch you later. And remember, rhinoceroses are just misunderstood unicorns. Bai!

Saturday, May 08, 2010

The 7th Saga (part 1)

For my next game, I decided to pick something with a bit more depth. Something... More out of the RPG vein, something... What's that? Oh, we're doing it in alphabetical order and 7th Saga is next? Okay, nevermind with any of that.

7th Saga comes to us courtesy of developers Produce and publishers Enix. And when I say courtesy, I really mean rudely, because I like fun. And fun does not include errands, because errands are boring. And that's what's going on so far. But! I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start with the story and premise -- What's that? Seven runes? That's it? Okay, so basically you just have to collect seven runes. Oh, I get it, 7th Saga, seven runes. Alright, so what's the main draw? Well, you pick one of seven different playable characters, all who do something slightly different than the other. Here's Wikipedia's take on them:
Characters in The 7th Saga run along a continuum from predominantly physical-oriented to predominantly magical-oriented. They are, in that order:
  • Wilme Pelin (Alien): An alien with a fiery, lava-like spiked body. Arrogant and aggressive, he seems to want the runes for power and to prove his superiority. He's strong and has the highest HP of the seven, but suffers from a fixed set of equipment, and a low Magic rating causes his Fire magic to be quite impotent.
  • Lux Tizer (Tetujin): A 5000-year old robot created by a long extinct civilization. Lux is polite, logical, and inquisitive. He searches for the runes in the hopes that their power may help him unlock the secrets of the Tetujin's origins. Lux is physically very powerful especially in defense, but has a poor selection of (Laser and Thunder) magic spells and equipment, although he is the only one that can use those spells. Along with Esuna, Lux can never be the "traitor" apprentice.
  • Olvan Jaess (Dwarf): An extremely old Dwarf warrior, with a pleasant personality. He joins the search for the runes in the hopes that they can restore his youth. Statistically, he is similar to Kamil, but with more HP and Defense, and less MP and speed, and a few differences in equipment/spell selection.
  • Kamil Dowonna (Human): A human knight. The most average, well-rounded character, Kamil has access to a large selection of equipment and can cast both offensive and defensive magic. He wears blue armor and the instruction booklet says that he is best paired with a stronger ally.
  • Lejes Rimul (Demon): A power-hungry demon. Sly, manipulative, and unapologetically evil, Lejes wants the power of the runes in order to rule the world. Lejes equips very strong weapons and eventually learns every single attack spell (except the Lux-exclusive Laser and Thunder spells), but his selection of armors is quite poor, and his attack spells hit with less force than Esuna. Lejes never learns any healing magic.
  • Valsu Saizer (Human): An elderly priest who has dedicated his life to the cause of good, Valsu wishes to use the runes to bring peace and prosperity to the world. He has excellent healing magic and one powerful Ice spell, but lacks skill in physical combat.
  • Esuna Busy (Elf): An elf magic user and the game's only female protagonist, Esuna seems to regard the search for the runes as some sort of fun adventure. She begins the game cocky and headstrong, but becomes more uncertain and less confident as the story progresses. She has extremely high Speed and Magic potency, and can use both kinds of magic, but her attack spells are exclusively Ice-elemental and she is physically very weak. Like Lux, Esuna never turns out to be the "traitor" apprentice.
I'm never one to pick characters based on how funny I think they look, else I'd probably go for the alien, as he has buck teeth and bunny ears. No, no, I play based on practicality no matter what, so I went with the f*cking robot. It made me sad as well that I couldn't fit Dingbang as the name, especially as this was the first game in which I could pick one. So, I present! DINGB, master robot and champion of Wintendo. He fells enemies in... five or six strikes, and rarely does anything but speak in capital letters. (As the rest of the Tetujin do.) I like to pretend that the reason people are so short and coy with me is because I'm a tall, thick robot constantly yelling "HEY, HOW'S IT GOING?!" in their general direction. But that isn't the best part yet. He starts out with high HP, and takes one damage for virtually the first fourth of the game. One damage! Har, har, har. Plus, with not needing to buy weapons or armor (which he can't use) I am practically not hurting for monies. Healing pots and power-ups for me, galore.

Alright, so, the king dude tells you you need to go get seven runes -- Oshit, there's seven characters too. Clever, clever. Anyway, you have to collect seven runes because they got scattered when some old guy killed a demon and decided to hide them. Cool, I can sort of dig. But first things first.
Alright! Next time's post will include much more, such as my first few forays, battles, these two blokes:

and copyright infringment! Stay tuned and remember, friends are like potatoes: if you eat them, they die.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

3 Ninjas Kick Back: The Finale!


You got it, son! Taken down, 'Koga.' If that is even your real name. You got pwnt by an eight year old with a bad vocabulary and a tummy ache.

After the Japanese Gardens, you invade 'Koga's' estate. See, I only know his name is 'Koga' because of one sentence near the end of the game. So we hang glide into his castle to get the dagger, but, surprise! No dagger fo yu! You get all the way through just to find out that. Yep. A few handfuls of hair and an hour or so of my time wasted.

As you can see, the story telling cut scenes are breathtaking! They really get across the character's wants and feelings and needs and oh fuck it. Painfully boring story telling, even for the Super Nintendo. After searching his castle for the dagger and coming up empty, you're transported to the gold room. I dunno how, but that's it. Yeah. Fun. He also shoots your Grampa.

'Koga' is kinda like the level with Big Bertha, except in a tight little Asian package. He has this annoying habit of goading you into jumping over him and then smacking you in the ass with his staff. Even if you run at him and goad him into a front attack right as you jump, he quickly twirls and, again, smacks you in the fucking ass. His next trick is to jump in the air. Yup. That's about it. He doesn't ever attack. He just jumps. Straight up. Well then. His third attack is another annoying always-hit-you move. He spins on the ground, and it's just enough to hit you every time you try to avoid it. After that, it's easy street. He simply throws his staff while you're at range, giving you the opportunity to hop it and smack him in the balls (seriously, my sai - his balls) repeatedly. He takes just as many shots as BB, and it took just as many lives. But after a good session of kicking his balls, he finally fell.

What? No pants down? After this, you basically 'escape' by playing through a level similar to one of the first ones (one that I specifically didn't talk about because of its shitty idea of pure memory runs) in which a boulder chases you. Remember some of the Ninja Gaidans? Yeah, well, take that, and then don't throw in any skill, any patterns, any fuckin' fairness whatsoever. Oh, and a gigantic boulder is following you, and then there's three coming at you, and then finally finish. Thank God it was short, else I would be applying for a gun permit right about now. At the end, I was treated to some more thrilling cutscenes:

Which begs the question why in the fuck did I play this game? Oh yeah, the list..

Final Analysis

This game sucks. Its only redeeming value is that it...well, it doesn't have one. Its graphics are unappealing, the music is the same dreaded MIDI loops over and over and over and over until you stab your eyes to try and distract yourself from the pain in your ears, and the game is just a whole memory run. Remember what attacks here, jump over there, grab your ankles now, etc. There's no re-playability, no reason to even attempt to beat it. Even liking the 3 Ninjas, I hated this game.

To me, it was a definite 2 Kid-punching Ninjas out of 10.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

3 Ninjas Kick Back! (part 2)

And now back to our regularly scheduled programming!

I know, I know, next week's post in less than a day, who am I!? GOD!? Nope. Just Dingbang. I've broken real ground with 3NKB. Last we heard, I was finally past that cursed first level, I breezed past the second, and was on the third. Well, zone, not level, technically. But who are you to question my labels?

The next few parts were relatively easy, until I ran into a large problem. But more on that later. Here's a slideshow of what you missed. (If you would prefer, play Yakety Sacks as we run these down.)

After the third "zone" of the first level, you go to the second level. You start off with this awesome set of pictures, and then you're off to get some stuff from Grampa's cabin.

At the end of the cabin you meet up with a giant dude. That's right. We're sending gigantic hunks of muscle to beat up little children. And I still whooped his ass.

After the cabin you go through a secret cave. It's chocked full of ninjas and bullshit cheap shots. Ninjas smoke in behind tree roots, (which you're behind) frequently camp and firebomb the tops of ladders and ropes, and sit on ledges waiting until the slightest pixel of you jumps from a trampoline up just to shoot you down.

After the caves, you go to Grampa's hospital. Whooooo. You have to free some people from the 'Grungers.' You know, the retards from the cabin. I even caught some sweater melons. (see above) The zone is a breeze, and the only hard part about this level is Big Bertha.

Now, I don't know her real name, but I think Big Bertha was a helluva lot nicer than 'this monster.' Pardon my French, but she was a pute. Not only does she notch two health per swing, but she has a ranged syringe attack. Plus she can take a few punches, possibly more than fifty. It became a game of jumping back and forth over and over and over and over again, constantly knocking her in the tits. This fight took more than patience from me. I took two or three breaks, had to go over and over again. Plus, she totally pulls her pants down and assumes the position. I think.

After Bertha we traveled to some Japanese garden for God knows what reason. Oh yeah, to let some birds loose. Caged birds. You know, like some people's pets. Sure, they might have been the kid-punching-ninjas, but still, that's property man. It was in the Japanese Gardens that I learned about the almighty powers of the time limit. The time limit has the power to kill you, rob you of one life, all when the clock strikes double zero. Or not. Maybe. If it feels like it. I died once on this level because the clock hit zero, and the other time...I  completed it. Wow. Great mechanic. It begs the question, why does this game even need a clock mechanic? Maybe to increase the speed and up the difficulty? Thank God Megaman didn't have a time limit, else I'd be fucked. Mario's time limit was wholly doable, but 3NKB's time limit is cold and unforgiving, especially on the longer levels. Or not. Maybe. If it feels like it.

Next time I will finish up this game and give my final thoughts! Dingbang out!

3 Ninjas Kick Back! (part 1)

3 Ninjas Kick Back is an action beat 'em up game developed by Malibu Interactive, published by Sony Imagesoft, and is based on the movie of the same name. When I say is based on, I, of course, mean has almost nothing to do with except for character names and (loose) looks.

The basic gist of the story is that you follow the three brothers, Rocky, Colt, and... uh... Jelly-bean, or rather, Tum-tum, on a quest to nab a prized dagger that has been stolen. Wackiness is sure to ensue as three kids not even old enough to drive make the trip all the way to Japan on their own.

There, now that's out of the way, let's get on to the game.

Oh my goooooooooooooood-

I jumped in quickly. I picked the smallest, because I really fuckin' love jelly beans. And with a face like that, how could you not? After selecting your prepubescent ninja, you're greeted to a shout of 'MURDERIZE 'EM!' and quite possibly the greatest music known to the Super Nintendo. We here at Wintendo will have a hard time getting the zoning riff out of our heads.

Okay, first step in the game. You start on a narrow platform. I took the liberty of jumping off and starting to run and -- oh what the fuck!? A boulder instantly rolls behind you and if it hits you there goes seventy-five percent of your life. Yeah. How about them apples? The ground shortly after your measly starting point has three hanging rocks that knock a notch off your life when they hit. So, to me, it was a no brainer. I ran like shit not caring about the hanging rocks until I came to an area with a swinging vine, where, presumably, I could escape the giant rock following me. No problem. I jumped and mashed buttons to grab and...didn't get anything. I fell onto the spikes below the vine. To add insult to injury, 3NKB doesn't have what I like to refer to as injury time. There's no flash of invincibility to protect you for the moment. So I hit the spikes, and then got rolled by the giant fucking boulder. Awesome.

Toodly fuckin' do.

It is quite sad. My first game in to the epic journey, and I couldn't get past the first obstacle, let alone the first level. I continued three times and finally had to turn to a strategy guide. I headed on over to (for copyright's sake) GameFAG's and, low and behold, found one guide. Up! Up was the magic button. I eagerly dashed back into the game only to find that... uh, wow, you didn't grab onto the vine itself. You grabbed onto the tree branch. No worries. Making my way to the other end of the branch I was able to... not jump off but fall back onto the spikes. And die. Again.

Until, by a stroke of luck, I was able to spring myself upward into the air. Ho ho! You fooled me once, shame on me! It seems by holding up and the jump, you spring yourself upward into the air. That's how you glide yourself down onto the platform. My excitement was shut down almost instantaneously as a ninja flashed in (presumably Grampa) and punched me in the face. Yes, my Grampa punched me in the face and left me to die. Thanks.

Damn right you are. Punching a little kid in the face.

After a few choice obstacles, I had done it! I got to the second level! I was ready for anything, for the greatest challenges only a level two could bring -- oh wait I'm on level three already. Yeah, see, level two is just a big drop. Yeah, you hold down and the attack button on the downslope and you kill and collect everything in your path as you slide right into third. How's that for up and down difficulty?!

Stay tuned! Next week's post will contain an AWESOME cut scene.

Monday, May 03, 2010

Welcome Back Into the Fold

Welcome, one and all, to the glorious tale of one Sir Dingbang of 1337dom, the most elite character before 1337hood was ever conceived. In this simple blog we will attempt to chronicle his wins and his fails, his triumphs and his...well, fails, in a concisely over-the-top and completely unfunny manner.

By the by, the meaning of the name Dingbang is wholly unknown to the lay person, but means "to protect the country" in Asian. So, from there you could say that Dingbang is a protector of the country of Gaming, if Gaming were a country.

Oh wait, there is.

So, come one, come all, return to Dingbang's tale of adventure and misery, and really, really bad puns. There will be great SNES games, there will be mediocre SNES games, and there will be Shaq Fu. We will laugh, we will cry, and you all will hate me for my puns.

But yes, there really are 764 games in our collection, and we here at Wintendo will attempt to run down the list and beat every game at least one time. There is no iron man, no 100% completion bonus, no speed runs. Just a good solid... seven hundred f*cking games. *sighs*