Friday, January 30, 2009

Cosmic Surfing

So I'm playing Star Ocean. The remake of the first one. I tried it out back when it was released in October. It seemed shallow. It seemed like I had better things to do. So I quit after 15 minutes. I didn't even save. I figured I would never try it again.

But then the PSP port of Second Story came out, and for whatever reason I decided to give it a shot. I bought the Playstation original at release 10 years ago. I did not care for it. Boy was it slow, with all the ellipses and sweat drops. But all that stuff is more tolerable on a handheld, since I can just do something else while mashing X and waiting for all that bullshit to end. Also I think they may have sped up the text scrolling a bit. Or I just hate myself and have fewer reservations about wasting my time than I did in my teen years, which is more likely. I have this problem where I go back and re-examine things after the hate has passed to see if it's any more palatable. To see if I've grown. To see if I misunderstood it in the first place. This is a big fat waste, especially with video games. It usually just rekindles the hate. But here it wasn't too bad. I was kinda having fun with the game.

But the entire time I was playing it was eating at me -- I should be playing them in order. Even though by all reports the first game is inferior. Even though I couldn't care less about the plot. So I gave in and started First Evolution again. But I did it the smart way. I started cheating.

And let me tell you there is nothing finer than cheating. This is how you make B-list J-RPGs (AKA anything not from Atlus R&D1 or Dragon Quest) tolerable. Using CWCheat I've jacked up the movement speed, turned off the crafting animations, and turned on save anywhere. I can disable random battles when I am not in the mood. I've made the game as it should have been in the first fucking place. Why didn't I think to do this earlier? I've lost too many hours of my life to good games that made bad decisions.

Not that this is a good game. I don't know if I'd praise it that much. It is OK. I promised myself I'd stop playing "just OK" games but sometimes they are interesting. It is a short game by modern RPG standards, which helps. I've been playing it for a week, I'm 12 hours in, and thanks to all my cheating to remove the tedium I am almost near the end. Even with the cheating there have been times I've thought about quitting, but I couldn't bring myself to do it because "I've already played this far and there's not that much left." Poison thinking! Gamer thinking! But it's OK. I am focused on this game. I will beat it. I will move onto something better. It is keeping my mind off bad things. Keeping me clean. Keeping me off the streets.

It's an odd game in some ways. Even though it was originally a Super Famicom RPG it has that Playstation feel. The opaqueness. The retarded secrets. The missable characters. The crafting. The hundreds of skills you just dump points into at random cuz you have no idea what you're doing. All that stuff that would drive you crazy unless you play with a FAQ, y'know? I didn't need a FAQ to understand the basics of Final Fantasy IV. That was good. But just about everything on the PSX was needlessly complicated. Even the stuff I enjoyed. Even Dragon Quest VII had all those stupid shards. You take a break from that game and there's no way you're coming back with a clue about what you were doing. You're going to need a FAQ. This didn't really improve as technology's progressed. I think I'd rather grind than FAQ.

Star Ocean's a sci-fi game. Or at least that's what I was lead to believe. It was really the main reason why I wanted to play it. I'm not big on anime, but the box art! All slick and colorful. I wanted that. But instead it's like one of those episodes of Star Trek they shot on the set of Gunsmoke or whatever. I understand why they had to do that on Trek. Budgets were tight, right? Options were limited. But nothing's stopping you in 2D. Nothing but your imaginations. So why did Tri-Ace make this sci-fi game where you spend 10 minutes on a ship and the rest of the game traipsing through a generic fantasy land? Did they license an early version of RPG Maker that only had a limited fantasy-RPG tileset available? Marketing concerns? I dunno, maybe it's the game they wanted to make, but early on there's all this Trek influence and as it progresses it becomes more and more like every other J-RPG. Now it's all collecting emblems to open the gate to slay the DemonLord and the future-town filled with the petrified bodies of the party's friends and family has been forgotten. God, I'd actually forgotten there was any spaceship and time travel business until I started writing this post.

I'm also pretty sure this was not handled by a Japanese team. It's definitely by TOSE, or some other stealth-studio. It's attractive enough, but there's something off. Something kinda Korean MMO about it all. Kinda like those PSP remakes of FF1&2. It also has plenty of bugs, like how the abilities to raise or lower the encounter rate doesn't work. And the maps are kind of a mess, often feeling like random bitmaps linked together. You know, you exit the screen to the southwest and start the next screen facing north. Totally B-team. Thankfully the dungeons are easy. Everything's easy. It's all very shallow, really. Mash X. Win. But the crafting can be neat, and the simple combat isn't too bad as long as you don't use mages, because the spell animations slow things down way too much.

Yeah. The game's OK. I'll probably beat it today, and instead of doing the sensible thing and moving onto part 2 (which is superior in all ways aside from cutscene pacing and length) I'll start playing some other third-rate RPG. "Hey, this message board poster with the loli avatar who doesn't know the difference between 'your' and 'you're' likes Ar Tornelico. Maybe I should try it..."

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The End Of SaGa

My humans, mutant and monster scaled the tower, were booted to the bottom, then climbed back up only to discover that their entire adventure was just a game designed by the Creator for his own amusement. So my dudes killed him. They had the option of going through the Creator's secret door -- a door that surely lead to other worlds! -- but they declined and returned home. The End.

It was pretty awesome. I had far too much fun with this game. That may have been because it was short, I didn't pay for it, was able to speed it up in the emulator, and I FAQ'd my way through the whole thing. All that made it feel less like work and more like fun times. I wasn't obligated to play it because I stupidly bought it cuz it was on sale! I was doing it cuz I wanted to. I was doing it for love.

Now I'm thinking about maybe playing SaGa 2. I imagine the remake will be pretty different, and who knows when/if it'll come out here. But maybe I should play some of the games I paid big money for? I like a lot of those games, but I often delay playing them because, well, I like them. I postpone joy! You shouldn't do that. You never know when your number may come up.

(I coulda swore it said "killed". You do see some dead kids later, though. Hardcore.)

I bought the Last Remnant when Amazon had it on sale. Lots of people have called it a secret SaGa game, and I guess I can see that, what with its needlessly opaque systems and all. But I just couldn't get into it. It would alternate between being mindlessly easy and frustratingly difficult, and the battles just dragged on and on due to all the combat animations. Its world and art design also did nothing for me. Or my room mate, who repeatedly called it "the gayest thing" she's ever seen. The technical issues, which seemed to be the big reason why it reviewed so terribly, were totally overblown, though. You install the game and its problems are no worse than any recent highly rated WRPG I've played. But still. Too damn slow. Maybe someone will release a mod for the PC version that greatly increases the speed of the battle animations. That would be nice. I want to like it more than I did. Its systems were weird but it sure wasn't SaGa weird.

I don't have much nostalgia for 16-bit Square RPGs. I loved them at release, and I can still appreciate them, but my fondness for the SNES has waned over the years. That sound chip? I was blown away when I heard that music in Super Mario World, man. The pianos kinda sounded like real pianos! But now I prefer that Genesis chip. It's raunchy. It's not pretending to be something it isn't. It's its own thing and it doesn't care what you think. Like SaGa.

I hope so!

I'm going to sleep. I stole these images from GameFAQs. Thank you, whoever posted them all!

Friday, January 23, 2009


Who's that Pokemon??

It's Psyduck! I was somewhat disappointed when I took the Pokemon Mystery Dungeon personality test and did not get him. Instead I got Squirtle, which is OK. He's a jokester. He has a gang, and they cause trouble, but it's all for fun. I think. Was the Squirtle Gang episode the one that ripped off the Seven Samurai? I feel like I've seen a billion cartoons that have ripped off that film's plot, but I can't think of any others off the top of my head right now. I just know I sure felt dumb when I finally saw it. "Oh! I should have known this was the movie everyone was lifting from!" Psyduck is the best Pokemon.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

"Poor king...murdered by his own man"

I am still playing SaGa/Final Fantasy Legend. It's enjoyable how broken and odd it is. Once I got past the opening grind it's been pretty damn easy, with my mutant's odd, disappearing/reappearing skills laying most everything to waste on the first turn. My humans are really just there to take over when the mutant is without a good combat skill. The monster is there for comic relief -- he went from a bull to a worm to a piranha with a TUSK attack and...well, right now I have no idea what he is. There's a FAQ that details how the meat transformations work but I don't really want to know. I like surprises.

I remembered spending the majority of the game lost in a tower, but so far the tower segments have been really brief. I did not recall any of these side-worlds you visit at all. I've been to Hell, and Waterworld, and you start off in a typical fantasy kingdom but with a large cephalopod population. I also went to Paradise. Its residents enjoy a life of nothing but eating and sleeping more than I do. It was the first stop on the tower, I think, and I'm wondering why the party didn't just quit the climb right there. The game's such an odd hodgepodge of scifi and fantasy, moreso than any FF game. I mean, my party's inventory is made up of Colt .45s, SMGs, Sabers, Battle Axes, tomes of Fire Magic, beast nails, Grenades, and Rocks. Rocks are surprisingly strong. The world design so far is a similar mess. The whole's not very cohesive. There wasn't much thought put into any of it, I don't think. Sooo it's a lot like this blog, really. And I think that's why I like it. There's a lot to be said for games that don't really know what they're doing. Or games that do know, but don't really care that it's not "right". You know what I mean? You don't see it much from Japan or the West nowadays. Thank God for Eastern Europe. And Kawazu!

Monday, January 19, 2009


So they're remaking SaGa 2. I'm not big on the art style they're using. I'm sure I wouldn't mind it in any other game. It's clean, colorful, nice enough. But I always think of SaGa being all flowery and watercolors, y'know? Maybe that's me applying my impressions from the later games to the earlier ones, cuz the GB games were just little pixel turds wandering around, but without that style...SaGa's retarded, right? As far as I can tell it makes no sense. But if you wrap it in an artsy craftsy art-style you trick me into thinking it's really just too deep for me to understand. Modern shonen art, though? That means it's probably just dumb.

I owned Final Fantasy Legend AKA SaGa 1 as a kid. I kinda loved it. It was the only game I had with me while at camp. Another kid had a Turbo Express with Galaga 88 and boy was I jealous of that kid. But SaGa was cool. I had a party with a mutant, and a monster, and I was climbing a tower so I could kill God? I was getting close to the end, too. Then some other kid stole it. I have no idea who it was. I'm sure they regretted it once they started playing the game.

So this remake announcement has inspired me to try SaGa again. I took a stab at it last summer, but didn't get more than a few minutes in. This time is different, though. I'm cheating from the start. I've got many tabs open with FAQs in each one. I will get over that opening hump and I am going to kill the shit outta God.

Two humans. One mutant. One monster - I went with goblin. We head out of town. We are battling. I need to return to an inn after the first battle. And then the third. And now...I can't afford to heal, because mutants randomly gain HP during battle, and healing at an inn costs 1GP for every HP you need restored. And the only way to level up my humans? By buying items. But I can't afford items, because I need to spend all my money on healing. This is like my life. I can't get a car cuz I don't have a job and I don't have a job because I never went to school and I didn't go to school because I had to get a job and I think Alice Cooper had a song like that. And this FAQ is like my parents, it has no good advice!

Eating the flesh of my enemies has turned my goblin into a skeleton, and now an albatross, and now back to a goblin. One of the skeleton attacks is "BONE" and the goblin's "NAIL". My monster has the lowest HP out of the entire party but he is the only one who hasn't died yet.

I have discovered that you can buy potions. They cost less than staying at an inn! These old UIs, they are tricky and make you feel dumb! But it is also my own fault, because I am not putting in the effort. Trying to learn the game as I should. I have the emulator set to turbo, and so I am missing a lot of what's going on. Like how my mutant learned some special abilities at some point, and has been using them instead of attacking, causing the battles to drag on for much longer than they were previously. I guess I need to pay attention!

Rather than buy armor I spent money on an HP increasing potion for my female human. Success through substance abuse rather than experience. My mutant has learned the ability "GAS" and it is killing enemies in one hit. I better use it every chance I get, because who knows how long it'll be before it gets randomly replaced by some lesser ability, like "QUEEF".

(I know if I ever re-read this post I'll want to kill myself for that last line.)

From a FAQ:

"If you are already at the maximum strength or agility (255), equipping a piece of armor that boosts that specific stat will temporarily reset that stat back to ~1, until you unequip that armor."

That's how you know it's a SaGa!

The king has offered me a reward of "anything I want" if I convince a girl in a southern town to marry him. The girl is an octopus. My mutant has 200HP. My humans have 60. My monster has 20. In addition to GAS my mutant has learned MIRROR. Then ARMOR, which was replaced by ELECTRO. Then ESP replaced MIRROR. Then MIRROR replaced ESP. This was over the course of 20 or so battles. SaGa! I've done little more than grind for money so far. I don't know if you do anything else in this game. I know I made a post this morning about how terrible grinds are, but this is different. This is black & white. This has a catchy 8-bit theme. This has monsters transforming through the power of meat, and a mutant with gas and short term memory loss, and drug-addicted humans, and towns and kings named HERO, SWORD, SHIELD and ARMOR. It endorses bestiality. This all makes it rewarding. It makes a difference!

Passionate Lover

My dreams! They have not come true. I was hoping this blog would inspire me to work my way through my underplayed video games. That writing would increase the fun! But you know what? I don't want to do that. I just want to beat people up. I want to play Street Fighter, and read about Street Fighter, and watch videos of Street Fighter. I'm wondering why did I ever buy any other games? They're not as good as Street Fighter. They lack passion. They're checklists - I completed this and this and this and I am done. Now move onto the next!

Though part of me would like a checklist. A really good one. This is the bad part of me, the part that doesn't want to take responsibility for my life, the part that just wants to ignore that I'm getting old and time is running out to succeed. I was playing WoW for awhile. That was a mistake. It is nothing but a checklist, and it is an easy way to kill time, but I think I need to start loving time instead of killing it. I canceled my account. I didn't spend too much time playing it, and I didn't pay much, so it is good. More time for writing, for the gym, for street fightin'.


Oh. I...don't even know what game that is. I am guessing someone posted that to some message board, and I laughed, and saved it so I could laugh again at a later date. And I'd say it is still pretty funny! Probably from some Amiga game. I bet it's by Psygnosis. I wanted an Amiga as a kid. I didn't know of any games for it, I just knew it could display lots of colors? A neighbor had a C64. I played Karnov on it. It was terrible. Like even worse than Karnov usually is, I think. He didn't have a Nintendo. Just his C64 with Karnov and a 2600. That poor kid.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Chris White Was Right

Except it's not our year. It's my year. I'm not gonna share it! I'm gonna hog all the victory, for I have a winning record in SF2 this week! Today I took a few lumps, and the win ratio went down a bit, but it wasn't enough. Nothing can stop me, not even the grave.

Though if Street Fighter 4 is as good as it looks it may tear me away. Look! Cammy! The first thing you see is her butt. You don't even need to win a match for a peek at the cheeks now! That is very wholesome, unlike Sakura. I always liked her but now that she's 22 and still dressed like a school girl the whole thing seems pretty unseemly rather than cute.

(Half this blog is me talking about female Street Fighter characters. That was not the original plan. I'm this close to being one of those guys with a lovepillow and wallscroll collection, aren't I? I can't get into that stuff! If my mom saw them she'd stop cleaning my room! As a precaution I am going to unsubscribe to NCS's RSS Feed.)

I was going to talk about new news! But I am tired now. I must retire.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

January Is A Good Time To Look Back

...even though it is a new year! The future may be here but it has not brought much with it. It is the same story every year! So I use this dead time to play some older things.

Like Chrono Trigger. I have played it before, of course. But I received the DS port for Christmas. It is a very good game, but I am somewhat bored. It is not very challenging so far. I just mash A, and I win. Which probably would be fine, since every other aspect of the game is excellent. But even though it has been so many moons since my first time, and I do not remember it as well as I remember many other first times, I remember enough that none of it is very surprising. I think right now I would rather just flip through an art book and listen to the soundtrack than play it, y'know? I am probably being too harsh. I bet my love will bloom again if I press on. Probably once I get the blonde in the furry bikini.

I am still hooked on Street Fighter 2. I won more than I lost today! It was a good day. I am excited about the Street Fighter 4, though I am concerned about the online. SF2HD's netcode is pretty fabulous (on 360 - the PS3 version is a mess) and if 4 isn't on par I am going to be very disappointed. I am a lonely man who needs to dominate other men from a distance. Do not get too close! It scares me.

I purchased many digital goods over the last month. So many sales! Today I tried once again to figure out how the hell you play Space Rangers 2. I put an hour or two into it. It is very Russian. Its English is worse than mine. I managed to clear the tutorial, I think, but afterwards I was still feeling lost and unsure of just what I should be doing. And I know that if I plugged at it it would all eventually click, and I would fall in love, and lose many hours. But I am not sure I want to lose many hours. Losing hours in a bad way so I can start losing them in a good way seems silly to me now. I have done it in the past -- I sure didn't understand Valkyrie Profile for quite some time for instance -- but I am older and tireder and I have to get in shape because I have a blind date in a month. Do I want to invest in a firm body or Eastern European space trading games? My body will be gone before Space Rangers is! Let us do it first.

Monday, January 12, 2009

This Post Would Be More Interesting But I Have The Flu

Hey! The Wii remake of Klonoa is coming to the U.S. That's pretty good news. Wii's been pretty dead since...I don't even remember the last retail Wii game I bought. Maybe copy of Fire Emblem I got for $17? And I didn't even play it. It just drove me to finally play Path of Radiance, which was a good thing. And it was a good game, though I had to skip through all the cutscenes because I just could not stand all the damn furries.

Anyway, Klonoa is a great game. Probably the best original Playstation game as far as I'm concerned. I'm not expecting the remake to replace the original - in the screenshots you can see they upped your hearts from 3 to 5, and if they touched the ending at all that's an automatic DQ. I don't care much for stories in video games. I can't think of many that made me feel a damn thing. But shit, the end of Klonoa had me crying like a baby. I don't remember many cutscenes prior to that. I think it was just a very simple story? Unlike Klonoa 2, where they just yakked and yakked and yakked forever. I know Klonoa 2 has its fans but I am pretty sure most of them haven't played the original. It's far, far better. I thought the GBA games were better than 2 also.

I see it's now technically Monday. How about that! Mondays used to be kinda cool. I'd turn on my Wii, check out the Shop channel, usually end up buying something. Then Nintendo stopped putting up stuff to buy. And I got tired of dealing with the storage limitations. It's all for the best. I know all those Virtual Console games I bought were a waste, and won't carry over to the next Nintendo console. Regret! Digital distribution kinda sucks.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Fists Can Solve Any Problem

That's a funny screenshot, right? It's obvious the translation team is having fun. A lot of recent translations have been too clever for their own good -- Dragon Quest IV was a new (to me) installment in my favorite series but all the stupid accents and terrible jokes were such a turnoff that I still haven't finished it -- but the kids at Atlus? It's cute when they do it.

I don't know if the game (Tokyo Beatdown) will be any good, but the trailer looks kinda OK. Kinda reminded me of Dynamite Deka or Elevator Action Returns but, y'know, only in a very surface way. I'm sure if I actually played or watched a video of either game I'd be ashamed of myself for writing that. But they all have that goofy macho thing going on, right? Not too far off.

When I first saw the title I got excited, thinking it had to be a localization of another Kunio-kun game or Kenka Banchou, (which may not be that good but any game featuring teenage Japanese biker thugs shooting laser beams from their brains can't be bad) but nope. It's just another game by Success. I say that like it's a bad thing but I'm honestly not sure if I've played a game from them? I must have at some point but I sure can't think of anything off the top of my head. I just know everyone trashes them and I'm lazy so I follow the herd. Are they the guys who release all those lousy SRPGs? I do know they're behind the Dark Spire, which has to be good because I want it to be.

Checking their wiki entry I see a whole mess of games I've played, and they're mostly OK. I know Metal Saga had the funniest ending I've ever seen in a video game, and it occurred 3 minutes after I started playing. And I'd link you to a youtube video of it, but if there is one I can't find it due to the billion fucking Metal Gear Solid music videos. I'll have to rip it myself, or type up a transcript and post it here. It's fabulous.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

How I Wasted Wednesday

I wasted it with DEFENSE GRID! I beat Defense Grid! It was hard at the end. I had to actually think and plan and strategize, which is good, but I kinda like it when I don't have to do those things. I don't think I'm big on difficulty curves, or at least not traditional ones. Lots of people complain about easy final acts but not me! I love them. Frontload the difficulty, I say. Or have it spike occasionally throughout the game. But at the end? Just let me win. I wanna get it over with. I want to see the ending!

(Defense Grid had no ending. Maybe I have to earn all golds and beat all the challenge modes to get one. I'm hoping it's a happy one. The game is narrated by a pretty miserable gay British AI who keeps having 'Nam flashbacks. I was hoping he'd pull it together at the end, maybe have his consciousness transferred into a new human body. Maybe have his dead baby come back to life, wearing high-heeled shoes and a low-neck sweater. Zzzzap. It's not a big deal since I tend to tune out during all video game cutscenes but I grew kinda attached to my little gay robot buddy. I hope he's OK!)

I'm late to this tower defense genre. I tried the flash versions but none of them grabbed me. I think I've tried it a few times in WC3 but was just confused. I've played just about all the major console and handheld releases from the last year, though. They all seemed OK enough but none of them really grabbed me, except Ninjatown, which surprised me. Ninjas are tired, round cutesy art is tired, jokes are tired, but I really dug it. Defense Grid is far superior, though. I can't tell you why! I don't understand these things! But maybe it's the pacing. Most TD games I've played kinda drag. They alternate between boredom and panic. (Maybe I should take back what I said about difficulty spikes - spikes are good as long as they don't come after long boring easy bits!) Defense Grid lets you fast forward. All fast! No twiddling thumbs! Action! Action! Action! Even though I'm mainly just watching these little towers blow up aliens I feel like I'm in control because I'm holding down a button to make it go fast, and if I don't want it to go fast I let go of the button. I pull the strings! It's nice.

I also played some of the Quake Live beta. I guess I'm under NDA? But no one's reading this, and I don't think it's a crime to say it's just Quake 3 in a web browser. Which is really fancy and impressive, and Quake 3 is great. But I just suck at it, and I can't blame it on dialup nowadays. Though I did keep checking the scoreboard to see if the higher ranking players had a lower ping than me. I bet they were using aimbots.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Battered Family Man

I'm going to play Street Fighter!

It's a challenging game. I am not the player I should be. I made mistakes in my youth. I did not mix it up with the other kids in the arcades. They tended to be older. Surlier. Better. Now that I think of it I'm not sure I've ever played against a stranger in an arcade. Maybe someone came along and put a coin in a machine I was playing by myself, but waiting in line? Just to lose? Whatta waste of money and time!

Instead of bettering myself through practice and competition I played all by my loneseome. I'd lost most of my friends in 1992. Some moved away. Some drifted away. Some had grumpy parents who instructed their children to stop hanging out with me because I was a bad influence, and the little wimps listened. So by the time summer vacation hit I was down to one friend. He was more independent and mobile than I was, so it was his job to find spots with SF2 machines that no one played. Our favorite was the one at the slot car racing store. No one went in that place! And they had lots of cheap candy. So we'd eat candy, and we'd watch each other play SF2 against the computer. All day long.

He played as Ryu. Ryu was too hard for me. I couldn't pull off the fireball. A few years earlier I'd gotten a TurboGrafx CD with a copy of Fighting Street AKA Street Fighter 1. It was a terrible game, and I doubt we would have played it more than once had my little sister not somehow managed to pull off a fireball during her first match. Us kids, we flipped out. Turned the game from shit to awesome, and we'd bust it out often and spend entire matches just trying to do fireballs. They only succeeded a handful of times. Me? Never. My sister could do them no problem, though. She had the touch.

I can pull off a hadouken nowadays. Most of the time.

My main was Guile, I think? Him and Blanka. Charge characters. Easy special moves. The only moves that mattered - Sonic Boom, Flash Kick, and if your opponent got all up in your grill you mash Fierce and Roundhouse, because why bother with the other four attack buttons? They're weaker! Winning strategy. At least against all my opponents, who were little kids or girls. I'd let them win occasionally, because I'm a nice guy. But they all knew I was really the champ. Bow down.

Of course I knew I wasn't that great at fighters, but I didn't realize I was that bad until the first time I played a fighter online. I couldn't even blame the lag. It was just humiliating. Now I have to make up for lost time. I have to learn all the things I should have learned during puberty! Gotta learn....the moves.

Right now I am Cammy. She's my girl. She is Kylie Minogue. She likes to show me her butt. She has a German suplex and Frankensteiner, which are the best moves. I do not want to play as any other character ever. I don't care if she's the worst character in the game. Those forum posters are wrong. She's #1.

I hate losing to another Cammy player. I lose a lot. More often than I win. But it's OK as long as I win against against every Cammy. I need to be king of the Cammys.

Actually, losing isn't OK anymore. I go through these stages with fighting games:

- I start off, and I am bad, but I am learning. Just winning a round
is thrilling, and putting on a good fight is all that matters.

- I read up on the game and my character. I practice. I improve. I'd have a positive winning ratio now! Had I not lost 50 matches in a row when I started playing.

- I regress. I use nothing but medium kick. I forget all combos but the one suggested by the shoryuken forum poster with the cosplay Cammy avatar. I think I should use my Super the second I earn it. And then I whiff it. Or I pull it off but the guy sees it coming a mile away because I never combo into it. Because I forgot all the combos! Why did I bother learning? Learning is the biggest mistake I ever made, because it hasn't stopped me from making mistakes! I jump into Ken's dragon punch every time. I know it's coming! But I still jump. Because maybe this time my kick will beat it! Maybe this time he'll do a different move! Maybe this time...

Sometimes I get it together, and I play a smart match, and I win, but that isn't even satisfying now. I'm just getting what's owed me. Owed at least one win for the 5 matches I just lost! It's bad thinking. Bad living. Bad when you get angry and slap yourself, or throw things. I know something's watching me. A hidden spy camera. Dead relatives. Beings from another dimension. Or maybe...God? I'm being watched in some way, and I can push the thought out of my head most of the time, but oh, am I aware of it whenever I throw my shameful little game fits. I see me from outside my body, see what an idiot I am, and wonder why I'm even playing something that causes me to behave in such an embarrassing manner

So why am I playing? Cuz fuck, I gotta get my win/loss ratio over 50%. I can do it!

And with Street Fighter 2 I think I can do it. It's amazing how well it holds up. HD Remix may be uglier than the original, but it still feels like SF2 and that's what really counts. It's a simple game, relative to the fighters that have come since. I don't have to memorize dozens of moves, or complicated systems or styles, or master multiple characters cuz it's a tag team game. It's slower paced, maybe? It feels that way. That I have more time to think. I just need to think! Or cheat. Cheating may be easier.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Bad News From A Bad Man

So I've bought a lot of video games in the past month. Too many. I'm overwhelmed. Unable to focus! And I am not going to get much done if I am playing 20 games a day for 10 minutes each! Playing is work when you own this much. Playing is a problem. Cutting back on buying would be a solution, but it is not a fun one. Buying is often the most satisfying part, because I love a deal. I cannot say no to one. I remember my youth. Times were ruff. Costs were high. Space was limited. Now it is all so easy. Games are cheap. They are plentiful. And rarely are they R@RE HTF. I can't say no.

Time isn't an issue. I don't have much to do since my injury. I can do whatever I want as long as it doesn't involve people or love or pleasurable movement or leaving the house! But I don't really do what I want. I do what is easy, and video games are easy. Writing about them may be harder, which may be good. May give me some structure. Discipline. Playing less, writing more? OK!

(Actually I think I spend more time reading than playing. A game forum is easier than playing a game. It is the easiest but also the most hurtful.)

So I will try and post here often. Every day? That would be good. After a time I will be able to look back. I will see all the mistakes I made, all the words I wrote that only I found amusing, and all the time I've wasted. Hopefully I won't have too many regrets!

Let's do this!