Playing & Rambling #3: I Was Kind of Feeling It?

Late by a day because I sunk my teeth in an RPG for much longer than planned and it was actually not Persona 4 this time.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (Switch)

I’m not a skilled gamer when it comes to platformers so I wasn’t planning on getting Tropical Freeze anytime soon. However, I had an Amazon gift card laying around and a friend of mine who loves this game and has been telling all his friends to get this game (myself included) so I figured I’d give it a try.

I played a few levels with said friend and I’m liking it. The level designs are really colorful and you can tell from the secret areas and the collectibles that a lot of craft and care went into it. The music is infectiously catchy; I can see why my friend considers David Wise a genius composer. Out of the games I played this week, I’ve sunk time into Tropical Freeze the least so keep in mind that I’m only giving a brief first impression here.

Persona 4 (PS2)

I’m at the end of the penultimate dungeon so after I work on the Persona compendium for a little bit, I’ll fight the culprit and move onto the True Ending route. I maxed all the social links at around November so there really wasn’t much for Yu to do. You can just beat the boss and fast forward to the True Ending but doing so means you’ll skip on some of the game’s best Fusion Forecast bonuses. Ultimately, I had Yu fish for most of December (I had like 80 baits) and it cracks me up because it feels like he and I are procrastinating on catching the culprit.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (Switch) 

College caused Xenoblade 2 to fall into my backlog so I really wanted to get back to it. I put a lot more time into Xenoblade 2 than I originally intended to but I ended up beating the main story this weekend so I don’t regret it per se. That said, I really need to back into anime blogging, I’ve held been on and off on that for far too long.

I may write a review or something along those lines for this game ASAP so I won’t go into it too much detail here. But to sum things up, I like the game overall but in a lot of respects, it was a very uneven experience. The story baffled me a bit in how it wants and sometimes is a grand fantasy RPG only to then flaunt some of the most anime pandering nonsense I’ve seen in a while. And look, I’m a weeb so conflicts in taste is not the problem. Rather, it was hard to take a lot of scenes on an emotional level when you have character designs so riddled in fanservice and dialogue so cheesy and insipid. The setting is terrific though, very akin to the first Xenoblade‘s and the worldbuilding especially picked up at the endgame.

I also dig the combat for its combo and element mechanics and while it takes a lot of work and time, creating a good team of Blades is super satisfying. What isn’t satisfying though is the number of Core Crystals you have to waste to get the good Blades. Forget the flaws in the story, that gacha summoning nonsense is the worst.

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