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With WoW Gone, Console and PC Gaming Returns
Published on April 4, 2007 By iTZKooPA In Gaming
So I last updated you all on my gameplaying experiences almost a year ago so I figured that it was about time for another post. Hopefully now that I am completely done with school (go graduation) I will have more time to update this pitiful excuse for a blog along with playing games and just having more free time in general.

For starters, I quit World of Warcraft after almost two years of being a hardcore player. I quit in November along with my girlfriend, and as I stated when we both started the game, we definitely eBayed which of course left a bad taste in some guildies mouths. We both managed to get a nice sum for our playtime even though we both played two classes that aren't the most important in a lot of instances (rogue and hunter). Although I won't mention the amount, we came out with additional money even after you factor in the purchases of both copies of the game as well as our monthly fees.

The reasons for leaving were many, but it basically came down to the fact that my girlfriend had stopped playing the game over the summer and the guild that I had been a part of since the beginning had changed dramatically. Add to that the fact that I didn't want to pay additional money for the expansion and I had all the excuses I needed to leave, even if I did miss all the new content that so many people are enjoying.

Another reason to leave WoW was that I had dozens of games to play on the PC, a handheld or a console that I already owned, and obviously many more coming that I want to play. Since picking up WoW I had beaten maybe 10 games, probably more like 6-8, but since I have managed to complete about 8 titles since I decided to leave WoW including some that I had started years ago. So I have basically gone from one addictive title, to just rolling all that time into numerous titles.

The first two titles that come to mind since I last posted are Co-op games, Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles (GC) and X-Men Legends 2: Rise of Apocalypse(GC). Playing with friends (and especially my girlfriend) is perhaps the greatest joy I get from gaming. But due to the nature of connecting multiple GBAs and finding friends to man them, it took my girlfriend, one friend and I along time to complete Crystal Chronicles. I won't go into too much detail on it but it because we played it over the course of roughly two years, meaning I forgot a lot about it. At any rate the story was typical crazy Final Fantasy only no one died in this one so it was probably a little more kiddie. Although the gameplay was by no means kiddie since it was very complicated with challenging (often annoying) puzzles that had to be completed to progress along with an in-depth crafting system that I doubt many children would take the time to investigate in. At the time of its release the Gamecube was starved for good RPGs, even bad ones were few and far between. The lack of RPGs for the little purple box (in my case black) has even continued to now, the age of Wii. Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles was a great attempt from a well known company to fill the RPG void while being one of the first and only companies to mess with the interconnectivity of the GBA and Gamecube. If you have friends with GBAs then its definitely worth it, otherwise you can't Co-op which causes the game to lose a lot of luster, but single player is worth at least a try especially for those die-hard Final Fantasy fans.

Switching gears you'll notice, if your some sort of detective, that I never mentioned the original X-Men Legends before. This is simply because I never actually played it seriously till AFTER my girlfriend, two friends and I completed the sequel. This happened because I accidentally bought Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects thinking that it was the sequel to Legends (which I couldn't find a decent copy of at the time so I decided to just get the sequel since it was there). I promptly sold it back to get the correct title without even opening it. How I made the mistake I don't really know but I corrected it pretty quickly with just cause since that fighting game from EA was atrocious.

X-Men Legends 2: Rise of Apocalypse did not disappoint us. It was a great co-op title to follow Final Fantasy: The Crystal Chronicles, being much more fast paced with more brutal action and a storyline that wasn't out in the crazy Final Fantasy realm but the more common comic book setting. The title is fun, smashing things always is which the title is largely about but the combat was way to easy. Simply hitting A did the job most of the time and in the end the characters tended to get WAY unbalanced. Being a Wolverine fan I quickly chose him only to realize that my partners managed to kill all the standard guys before I could even get to the group to begin my mauling. I had to change to Magneto to be of any use, who I ended up making another over-powered character.

Instead of ruining the experience for my friends and I, we just decided to take it as it was and try to break the game as much as possible. In the end we just began battling to see who could get the highest hits, or wipe out a mob before anyone else could inflict any damage. The unbalanced nature of the game didn't ruin it largely because Raven Software managed to keep enough guys coming at you that using your abilities, which there were many to chose from and upgrade, saved a whole lot of time. The story and collection aspect along with the general RPG management of equipment, skills and attribute points meant that there was plenty to do beside bashing skulls. A great experience for anyone that wants to Co-op with friends and doesn't mind the often repeated and easy gameplay. Otherwise the title is largely mediocure for solo play since the AI for your teammates is mild at best. As stated the biggest con is that the title was all to easy on the default setting. Raven should either let us chose the hard setting or make the standard setting more difficult, not try to force you to play through again just to have more of a challenge.

Seeing as how I have already surpassed a page of text in OpenOffice, single spaced and 12 point, I think we all need a break. I will try my hardest to have a more updated blog, and once I get the gameplay updates out of the way I will begin giving my two cents on the latest and greatest from the PC news world in which I write for as well as playing experiences on consoles and handhelds of which I own too many. Stay tuned for information on the next titles I tackled including Yoshi's Island (GBA) and X-Men Legends (GC).

Currently Playing:

F.E.A.R. Extraction Point
Titan Quest

Advance Wars: Dual Strike
New Super Mario Bros.

Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance GC

Marvel: Ultimate Alliance
Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz

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