StreetPass Trader (3DS): COMPLETED!

Prices may go down as well as up.

I have been playing other stuff as well as No Man’s Sky, you know. Including all five new StreetPass games, and the best one, Trader, I completed today.

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It’s pretty simple: You buy stocks when the market is low, and sell when the prices are high. People you have StreetPassed help predict the trends, and different companies have different stock prices. The more times you trade in a certain company, the more expensive their shares become, and so the more you can profit (or lose!). That’s pretty much all there is to it.

It might be the simplest of all the StreetPass titles, but it’s the one out of the new batch of them I’m finding most fun, even though it is the most boring on paper.

Anyway, I’ve completed it by making 100 Million G, but there’s a further goal of 10 Billion G (I’m assuming US Billion otherwise it’ll take forever) which I’m aiming for next.

Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse (3DS): COMPLETED!

I whip my hair back and forth

The original Shantae on the Game Boy Colour (which I played on the 3DS VC not that long ago) was a lovely little platformer with some slight issues: it was very, very hard, and there was a lot of backtracking and wandering aimlessly. I really enjoyed it, but I was a little concerned the followups were going to have the same problems. Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse does not, I was pleased to discover.

Shantae and the Pirate's Curse
Maximum Spider

I picked the game up as part of that Nintendo Humble Bundle a while back and now I’ve played it I can say it’s a definite highlight of that pack. It looks incredible, especially in 3D, and fixes all of issues of the original game. There’s backtracking, but there’s an item that warps you to the start of each area and several upgrades and shortcuts you can use to speed around the place. It’s not exactly easy, especially the final area on the way to the end of game boss, but it is substantially more accessible than the GBC title. Baddies don’t take hundreds of hits, and those that do can be dispatched easier if you buy the available upgrades in the shop. I found that many could be defeated more easily later in the game using extra moves I’d unlocked too.

Shantae and the Pirate's Curse
Castlevania

These moves, like a dash, a triple jump and a down-attack also turn Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse into a Metroidvania type platformer, even more so than the (no longer available) animal morphs of the original, allowing access to new areas. There’s even a fill-in-all-the-squares Castlevania style map, and an dungeon filled with skeletons which apes Castlevania even more. As before, your hair is your weapon, and is basically a whip anyway!

Shantae and the Pirate's Curse
This bit was tricky

Hidden around the game, some more difficult to find and/or reach than others, are evil cacklebats, each corrupted by Dark Magic. A side quest, to unlock the “proper” ending, is to defeat all 20 of these creatures. I managed it although finding two of them took ages! There are also hidden squid which, when you collect four, gives you an extra health heart. I didn’t get them all, but they’re not important for the story.

Shantae and the Pirate's Curse
Filler boss

My only (tiny) disappointment with Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse was that each area borrows very heavily from areas in the first game, with most of the baddies from that returning. Yes, they’re redrawn and look incredible, but they’re the same as they were before. There are a few new ones, and it doesn’t really matter anyway. The bosses are all new (bar one, who literally tells you he’s a filler boss now, having returned from a previous game) and they’re all fun to beat.

Definitely one of Wayforward’s best games, although most of their output is pretty special. I’m really interested in playing their HD remake of the DSi Shantae game now too!

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Things I’ve been playing recently

Play ALL the things.

I’ve not done a roundup post for a while, but I have been playing quite a lot of stuff. Regardez:

BattlefieldBattlefield 4 (PS4)

I’m not a fan of shootmans, but I am a fan of bargains, so Battlefield 4 and Battlefield Hardline together for around a fiver was a steal. Then I did an odd thing: I actually played Battlefield 4. Not only that, but I think I’m quite near the end. It’s been quite good actually, although at this point I’m finding it a little bit repetitive – enter area, snipe everyone, move on. Naturally I could mix up my play style and use some different guns but when I tried that it didn’t go well. Tanks and boats and stuff did add some variety at least. Online? No.

HYRULE WARRIORSHYRULE WARRIORS LEGENDS (3DS)

Which is still amazing. There’s more DLC this week, but in the meantime I’m nowhere near finished. I have beaten the boss on the first Adventure Map (unlocking a second) and unlocked most of the characters. It’s just so much fun – I don’t think I’ll ever tire of it.

Unravel Demo (PS4)

I’ve actually bought the full game as a result of being impressed with the demo. That and 1) it was on offer, and 2) my daughter was quite adamant I had to. She’s played the full game but I’ve only done the demo. It feels a lot like Limbo so far, albeit brighter and cuter.

Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FETokyo Mirage Sessions #FE (Wii U)

Ever since seeing this when it was announced I’ve been interested. I wasn’t entirely sure why, as I had no idea how the game mechanics would even work – some sort of cross between Akiba’s Trip, Idolmaster and Fire Emblem? Maybe? Who knows. It didn’t matter. Turns out, having bought it on release, it’s Persona. And it’s very most excellent, even if I’m only a few hours in so far. I really should get back into Persona 4 Golden, actually. Stupid Vita.

Table Top RacingTable Top Racing World Tour (PS4)

This was a free rental on PS+, and it’s not very good. Somehow, though, I’ve been playing it off and on and I’m just over halfway through the game. It makes me pine for Micro Machines and how much better that is than this, which is slow and has boring (and very few) tracks.

Assassin's Creed UnityAssassin’s Creed Unity (PS4)

I’m still playing it! I completed it not so long ago, but I’m still having fun doing side quests and mopping up all the collectables. Been a few Assassin’s Creed games since I last did that, so it’s obviously pushing the right buttons.

ShantaeShantae and the Pirate’s Curse (3DS)

So many boobladies. In eyepopping 3D! But as well as that, Shantae is a fantastic platformer with metroidvania elements. I’d enjoyed the original GBC game on the 3DS Virtual Console so when it was available as part of that frankly ludicrous Nintendo Humble Bundle I was very pleased indeed. I’m quite a way through it too, having been unable to put it down for a whole weekend, and I’ve just one main area left to clear, I think.

Kirby: Planet Robobot (3DS): COMPLETED!

Kirby Your Enthusiasm

You know, I hadn’t even realised Kirby: Planet Robobot was out already, and then I got it as a Father’s Day present. And it’s only bloody excellent.

Kirby: Planet Robobot

I know some recent-ish Kirby games have been a step away from the normal “inhale baddies, copy their abilities” model of old, so I was a little worried Planet Robobot might be similar, especially as the core addition is Kirby’s new mech suit. I needn’t have worried though, as this is proper Kirby – and when in the mech? It’s still proper Kirby.

Kirby: Planet RobobotHappy colourful levels with definitely Kirby-sounding music mixes with metallic surfaces and robots, but it’s clearly a standard Kirby game. There are multiple (usually two, sometimes more) planes of play, with Kirby popping into and out of the screen in fantastic 3D, but this just adds to the game rather than change anything fundamental. Some puzzles (mostly to obtain Core Cubes, needed to unlock boss levels) use this fore- and background swapping to great effect.

Kirby: Planet RobobotThe levels themselves are pretty big, although with 6 worlds (and a final boss fight 7th world) and just 4 or 5 levels in each it isn’t a large game overall. At least, I thought that until I’d beaten the game and two more modes unlocked! One of which is to play a modified “remix” of the game again, only as Meta Knight, who doesn’t have any copy ability nor does he have a mech suit. That will make some of the mini boss fights interesting!

Kirby: Planet RobobotThe game itself was incredibly good fun. I raced through it in just a few days mainly because it was so much fun I couldn’t put it down. Sure, it isn’t difficult either (I died maybe five times in total, ending the game with over 40 lives) although getting a few Core Cubes is pretty tricky – I’ve not collected them all so that’s something left to do. My only complaint would be in the SuckySuck(TM) Bit at the end where there’s a Boss Rush (albeit with a powered up suit which makes short work of them all) and then the final boss has a multitude of additional forms. Not hard, so not frustrating, but a bit clichéd.

Best Kirby game in ages. Probably since the SNES Kirby’s Dreamland 3, in fact.

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My Nintendo Picross – The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (3DS): COMPLETED!

It’s not Picross e7 though.

tumblr_o5dtar9lkr1svmpf2o1_400Gasp. No that really is the name of the game. It’s an eShop download that is available for free if you pick up enough Platinum points in Nintendo’s new “My Nintendo” service. If you jumped on Miitomo right away you should have enough by now so you’ve no reason not to get it.

tumblr_o54bemxz9y1svmpf2o1_400From the verbose game title, you should know what to expect. A Picross e game (it’s by Jupiter) only themed around Twilight Princess. There are 45 puzzles (repeated as Mega Picross puzzles, which is cheating a bit I suppose) and a pretty large Micross to solve in this package, which is roughly half the size of most Picross e titles in terms of content. Indeed, it took me just shy of 8 hours to complete everything.

Sure, it’s smaller, but it’s also free. And properly free as well, not like that Pokémon Picross nonsense from a while back – no game ruining IAPs here, thankfully – just lots of lovely Picross puzzles.

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Hyrule Warriors Legends (3DS)

The beasts call him brother, the ghost who walks!

I made an incredible discovery. After Cia’s story in Legend Mode (which was just the same as in the Wii U version), there’s an extension to the original main story! I suppose if I’d paid more attention to the game when it was announced I’d have realised this, but since I was going to buy it anyway I didn’t think to.

What is important about this new set of story levels, is not that there are new characters (Tetra and King Boaty McBoatface) as I knew about those, but that there are TWO new maps! Two! I didn’t even realise there was one! On top of that, they come with a new secondary weapon – the hammer – and several new enemies. And Phantom Ganon as the end boss, who you need to fight by batting back the energy balls he throws at you. It’s excellent.

So I finished all that off, and then did some more Adventure Mode.

Hyrule Warriors Legends (3DS): COMPLETED!

Dah dahdah dah-daaaah

Hyrule Warriors Legends
Ganon doesn’t really look like he’s built for running.

But you know this isn’t the end of Hyrule Warriors Legends, don’t you? Of course not. All I’ve done is complete Legend Mode, and even that still has Cia’s prologue yet to do – let alone track down all the hearts and skulltulas and stuff in levels I’ve already completed. Then there’s Adventure Mode, which I have given merely the briefest of touches, just to capture a fairy. I’m only 15 hours in, which is already much, much longer than many games but here I know there’s a good 100 more or so – at least – waiting.

As well as the main Legend Mode story, I’ve also played and completed all of Linkle’s missions which sort of intertwine with the main story. Not especially well, it has to be said, but the plot is totally irrelevant elsewhere in the game so it doesn’t matter. The bulk of the game is Adventure Mode anyway and there’s no plot there at all.

Hyrule Warriors Legends
Best. Warrior. Ever.

I mentioned it before, but it’s worth saying again: Linkle is superb. Her slightly ranged weapons, her speed, her aerial gunplay (crossbowplay?) all make her so much fun to play as. It felt a shame every time I had to play a level as another character after each of her missions, as although most of the other characters are great too, Linkle is best. Better than Link even. Hopefully unlocking her most powerful weapons isn’t too much of a task in Adventure Mode, as I want them as soon as possible!

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Hyrule Warriors Legends (3DS)

Linkle, she come to town. Come to save, the Prince(ss?) Zelda…

The best game in all creation is HYRULE WARRIORS for the Wii U. Probably. It came out of nowhere, wasn’t my sort of game in either respect – not a musou fan, and not a 3D Zelda game fan – and I bought it mainly because I had a funny five minutes when I saw it on the eShop. Somehow, it was fantastic, I’ve spent over 130 hours on it, and it just kept giving with the content.

HYRULE WARRIORS

And now there’s a 3DS version, with all the content of the Wii U version (at least, it seems so) and then some more. Squeezed into a 3DS? Impossible. Or perhaps not so impossible when you hear about those poor folk with a normal Not-New 3DS who have stunted framerates and no 3D. Thankfully, mine isn’t one of them and so the game is astounding. A couple of slight control and camera niggles, but nothing terrible, and it’s just as much fun as it ever was. Only more so, because it has MORE! More characters (Linkle is incredible), weapons and modes. A new fairy raising feature. And the 3D shouldn’t be underestimated either – it looks and feels great.

I’m but a toe in so far, with just 3 or 4 hours on the clock, but I can see this running and running, just like the Wii U one.

Some 3DS Demos (3DS)

I’ve not looked at demos on my 3DS for a while, and there have been a few recently, so I thought I’d give a few a go.

Hyrule Warriors Legends
I’m a huge fan of the Wii U version, and the 3DS version is just as incredible – if the demo is to be believed. I’m playing it on a New 3DS, so I know the performance is better than on an “old” 3DS, but it’s just the same as on the Wii U. Maybe not as perfect graphically, and no multiplayer, but I can see that I’m going to need this now. Not least because it unlocks stuff in the Wii U version…

Yo-Kai Watch
It’s Pokémon, only by the Professor Layton people and with some bizarre method of doing attacks. And… I quite enjoyed it actually. This surprised me, as I wasn’t expecting it to be my sort of thing at all. Will I get the full game? Maybe?

Stella Glow
At first look, this seemed like it was going to be yet another JRPG. In fact, it’s a SRPG in the style of Final Fantasy Tactics. There’s a lot a chatting, there’s a witch who is virtually naked, and the voice actors seem to be the same ones in every single English dubbed Japanese game made in the last five years, but the battles are great!

Puzzle & Dragons Z (3DS)

tumblr_nzddm7kqik1svmpf2o1_400I’ve posted a little about this before, but not for a while. I’ve haven’t stopped playing, it’s just… there’s been some repetition. For much of the game there isn’t a great deal of grinding, although perhaps I’ve been lucky and just levelled up the most suitable of my dragons by random chance. Then I reached the end of game boss, and whereas almost every other enemy in the game can be wiped out in just a couple of turns by my main dragon team, the final foe is impossible.

Literally impossible. I can barely even register a hit on any of his five heads, let alone deal much damage to his core (that’s if I even get as far as him exposing it), and so it’s off to the grind trail to find some more suitable dragons (or rather, the jigsaw piece drops necessary to evolve my current dragons into them) then spend many, many hours levelling up. Joy.

tumblr_nzddmfmnyg1svmpf2o1_400Although actually, it isn’t that bad. The puzzle matching mechanic of the game remains fun in a way normal RPG fights wouldn’t after 20 hours of grinding. That’s not a throwaway number, by the way, that’s how long I’ve spent grinding so far, just for the the final boss. I’ve not even assembled the full team yet either, never mind near level 99 with them. There’s a long way to go yet, and I’m 60-odd hours in as it is.

And then there’s the Mario themed version of the game to start!

Fairune (3DS): COMPLETED!

Fairune
Starting out in Fairune

Although I didn’t expect to, mainly because of the quirky fighting mechanic, I enjoyed the demo of Fairune. The full game was on sale this week and because of this, and that you can transfer your progress from the demo, I picked it up.

Fairune
Classic Zelda puzzle

The fighting mechanic is this: you walk into enemies to fight them. If they’re a lower level than you, they die. If they’re one level higher, they die, give you XP, but also damage you. If they’re two levels higher, they die, give you more XP, but also damage you more. Any higher than that and they’re indestructible. The upshot is, in Fairune you will always lose energy and will need to heal.

Fairune
Om nom nom nom nom

Once your head copes with Fairune’s odd way of doing things, the rest of the game is pretty standard in terms of how to play. You collect items that open new areas and they provide access to harder baddies and further items to open more areas and so on. There are a few Zelda-esque puzzles to solve, the odd hidden area, and a final boss who not only suffers from Irritating and Unnecessary Gaming Cliché #3, but also plays out completely differently to the whole of the rest of the game – it’s a shoot ’em up. There is a secret room with Space Invaders in it though, perhaps that’s a clue.

Fairune
It’s a UNIX system! I know this!

This final boss is actually the only place in the entire game I died, and I died twice there. Still, he’s not too hard when you know his patterns. None of Fairune is hard, come to think of it. Excepting that I forgot to pick up a particular item having used it – it’s the only one in the game you need to do this with, so I didn’t realise you could, let alone had to. This was a pain that sidetracked me for a bit, and I even thought one of the puzzles was bugged as a result, but no.

Fairune
More like Mega Dork, amirite?

Overall, a fun, unusual RPG-lite with some pretty pixel graphics and nice music that cost me under £2 and entertained me for two and a half hours. I’m not going to complain at that.

Japanese Rail Sim 3D: Journey to Kyoto (3DS): COMPLETED!

CHOO_CHOO___trainsim__t_httpst.coqWWTPISBOVTrains! Yay for trains! Well, one train. Which only does one, relatively short route. But trains!

In Japanese Rail Sim 3D: Journey to Kyoto, it’s your job to drive the electric train to, yep, Kyoto. You control the power and the brakes, and the aim is to arrive both on time, and stop at the correct point at each station. Some sections of track, like points and curves, have speed limits, and you have to take account of hills and stuff to maintain your speed without speeding. It’s actually quite simple to control, but getting an A rank for each station (you have to be pretty exact with stopping and timing!) is pretty difficult.

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I’ve played through and reached the end, hence “completed”, but there are more variant modes to unlock yet if I can do it with enough A ranks – night mode for example. I can’t say that for the normal eShop price of £12.99 this was a great buy, but it’s on offer right this moment for just ONE POUND, and for that it’s a bargain.

Things I’ve been playing recently

Lazy round-up time!

Puzzle & Dragons Z (3DS)

I think this might be in my top three most played 3DS games now, and I’ve not even touched the Mario themed option. I got stuck on a boss, then powered through a few more levels, then got stuck on the previous boss again when she cropped up later with another monster at her side. Too hard. I’ve been trying lots of dragon combinations and came close once to besting them, but then one of the two baddies almost completely healed both of them and that was it. Maybe some grinding is in order. Or some different dragons again.

Lego The Hobbit (Wii U)

We completed it, but since then we’ve been mopping up stuff. It’s pretty slow going though, and we haven’t even revisited any of the levels yet. Daddy Pig seems to voice half the characters in this, which is slightly absurd. Especially the blacksmith’s wife. With her beard. Hmm.

Ninja Usagimaru: The Gem of Blessings Demo (3DS)

A not very good puzzle game. I got bored before the demo even finished, to be honest.

Fairune Demo (3DS)

There’s a game called Witch & Hero on the 3DS which is the most ridiculous concept ever. You walk into baddies to kill them, but when you do, you take damage – meaning you’re inevitably going to die. It was rubbish.

Fairune seems to be by the same people and has the same mechanic, only instead of protecting a static character on a single screen, it’s a flip-screen RPG of sorts. And somehow, I’ve gotten a bit hooked on it. I’ve finished the demo and now will almost certainly buy the full game. This surprised me.

Chibi-Robo: Zip Lash Demo (3DS)

Everyone loves Chibi-Robo, right? And taking pictures of real things to include in the game and collecting junk just to tidy up because he’s a cute robot that does that? Awesome, right? Then why is this a slightly crap platformer instead of any of that? How disappointing.

The Legend of Zelda: Tri-Force Heroes Demo (3DS)

Well, I tried to play it. But it said no. I was in some sort of lobby and there were a couple of people to talk to and I found if I ran into a wall a ball fell from the sky and I could play keepy-uppies with it for a while but then that was it. I assume I needed some friends online to play with.

tumblr_nxtmcz0iec1svmpf2o1_400Badge Arcade (3DS)

No way am I giving money to this, but so far, I’ve not needed to. I’ve done well enough in the practise crane games to rack up a few free plays, and so far I’ve bagged about 12 badges. Not that I can use the badges because I’ve barely any space left on my home screen. I was hoping it would expand again, as it does when you hit about 80% full, but not this time. Boo.

Fallout 4 (PS4)

Oh yeah, this arrived.

Things I’ve been playing recently

Been a while since I did a roundup, so this covers several weeks…

Stan_Lee_is_a_bloody_liabilityLego Marvel Super Heroes (Wii U)

My daughter and I completed this some time ago, but the post game mop-up is huuuuge. Not only is there the usual Free Play of levels, but there are loads of other smaller levels you unlock, and hundreds of events around the world map. We’ve 230/250 gold bricks now, so the end is in sight.

LEGO® Jurassic World™ Demo_20151003154452Lego Jurassic World Demo (PS4)

Oh god I think we need to get this. We’ll probably get the Wii U version though, because co-op screen-each play is the way to go on Lego games. I know the PS4 version looks better, but screen-each!

WVW69iYicg80ANCGpGPuzzle & Dragons Z (3DS)

Slow going on this. I only do a single level every now and again, so although I’m getting there, it’s taking a while. I am enjoying it, though!

_t__PS4share_httpt.coZ6fVvHoVayThe Pinball Arcade (PS4)

Picked this up when it was on sale. It’s not something you can complete, but it’s pretty good. I got the first two “seasons” cheap, and although some are recycled from Gottleib Pinball on the Wii, it’s enjoyable. Some more than others, of course. One thing which is annoying, however, is that your users on your PS4 can’t share leaderboards, making the leaderboards essentially useless.

Pix the Cat_20151004141202Pix the Cat (PS4)

Saw this described as Chu Chu Rocket x Pac Man Championship Edition, but it’s not quite that close. In fact, the main arcade mode isn’t really interesting me and I was pretty disappointed… but Nostalgia Mode? Bloody awesome. It’s more puzzle based, and a lot of fun. So mainly I’ve been playing that.

Uncrowded (PC)

Some sort of Minecraft looking but more survival based game. Which appears to literally be a reskin of some Unity asset pack demo game released as a “new” title. Cheeky. And utter tripe.

Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 (3DS): COMPLETED!

tumblr_nvx9cbduni1svmpf2o1_400I got this with some of my Club Nintendo stars. RIP Club Nintendo, by the way. I struggled with what to spend them on before they expired, and of the number I had left Wario Land 3 was the only one I didn’t already have on either my 3DS or Wii U that I hadn’t already completed. I do have it on the Game Boy Colour, but never finished it.

tumblr_nwc2xug4dg1svmpf2o1_400About three levels in, I realised something was amiss. Not only did I not recognise any of the game, but it also wasn’t in colour. And it was possible to die. Hang on, I thought, this isn’t right. Have you spotted the mistake yet, readers? That’s right – I’ve got hold of Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3, not Wario Land 3. I was actually quite pleased, as I’ve never played it.

tumblr_nwc2yl6qfs1svmpf2o1_400Now I have, and I’ve completed it. It was fun, but nowhere near as much fun as Mario Land 2 or Wario Land 3. The extra hats Wario picks up are mostly unnecessary, the levels are linear, the game feels quite short, and although it’s better than 95% of other Game Boy platformers, it isn’t anything special. Of course, I only picked up enough treasure to get Wario a tree to live in (rather than a gold castle or whatever it is he wants), so I could return to find the hidden treasures, but I’m not sure I can be bothered.

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