The State of the Gamer: 11/5/20

<–The State of the Gamer: 10/22/20           The State of the Gamer: 11/19/20–>

A weekly post updated every other Thursday detailing my current gaming projects.  I have an account at Grouvee, which is a site you can use to keep track of your backlog, so please feel free to friend me there!

What I Purchased

  • DanceDanceRevolution PS3 – $42.48 @ Amazon
  • My Girlfriend Is a Mermaid – $2.49 @ Nintendo eShop
  • Cattails – $1.99 @ Nintendo eShop

What I’m Playing

Title: Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight
Series: Etrian Odyssey
System: Nintendo 3DS

Cover of Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir KnightDate Started: 9/7/20

I don’t think I’ve played this these past two weeks.  I’ve felt stymied because I know I need to do a lot of leveling.  I might just try the boss fight to see how badly it goes.  At least I’ll get an idea of what to expect.

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The State of the Gamer: 10/22/20

<–The State of the Gamer: 10/8/20           The State of the Gamer: 11/5/20–>

A weekly post updated every other Thursday detailing my current gaming projects.  I have an account at Grouvee, which is a site you can use to keep track of your backlog, so please feel free to friend me there!

What I Purchased

  • The Lion’s Song – $5.99 ($0.04) @ Nintendo eShop

What I’m Playing

Title: Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight
Series: Etrian Odyssey
System: Nintendo 3DS

Cover of Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir KnightDate Started: 9/7/20

I’m at the boss of the 4th stratum now and I need to do quite a bit of leveling before I take her on per the suggestions.  I want to try to take down one of the stratum’s FOEs especially since there’s an ingredient I can get from it.  It’s been a few day since I’ve played though.  I lose a little bit of steam if I don’t have a direct path forward, and really all I have to do is grind the FOEs on lower floors in order to level up.

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The Gamer Confessions Tag

I can’t remember the last time I did a game related tag if I ever have, and this one comes from one of my favorite bloggers Drakulus whom I helped convert into a Final Fantasy fan yass.  Nah, he’s an open minded guy who, along with other blogger buddies, has helped convince me to give FFXV a chance.  ANYWAY, this looked like fun so I snagged it.

Gamer Confessions Tag

A game everyone loves that you can’t stand

Okami picture


“Can’t stand” is kind of harsh.  I don’t hate this game, but I certainly didn’t love it as much as I thought I would.  It seems like something anyone into Zelda would adore, but I just couldn’t get past the annoying bug helper character and the weird vocalizations.  I loved the wolf though.

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The Poetic Edda: Stories of the Norse Gods and Heroes by Anonymous

Title: The Poetic Edda: Stories of the Norse Gods and Heroes
Author: Anonymous
Translator: Jackson Crawford
Date Started: May 8, 2017
Date Finished: July 22, 2017
Reading Duration: 75 days
Genre: Mythology, Poetry, Classic

Pages: 392
Publication Date: March 5, 2015
Original Publication Date: Circa 1200
Publisher: Hackett Publishing Company
Media: Paperback

Compiled by an unknown author in Iceland around 1270, and based on sources dating back centuries earlier, the single main manuscript of The Elder Edda is one of the literary wonders of the medieval world and the greatest source of knowledge of Viking lore in existence. These mythological and heroic poems tell of gods and mortals from an ancient era: the giant-slaying Thor, the doomed Volsung family, the hell-ride of Brynhild and the cruelty of Alti the Hun. Eclectic, incomplete and fragmented, these verses nevertheless retain their stark beauty and their power to enthrall, opening a window on to the thoughts, beliefs and hopes of the Vikings and their world. Andy Orchard’s new translation faithfully conveys the spare, unadorned style of the original metre and language. The glossed text us accompanied by four additional poems, a chronology, further reading, an index of names, a note on pronunciation, and an introduction discussing the poems in detail, the history of The Elder Edda and its influence on writers from Tennyson to Tolkien.”

The Poetic Edda, compiled histories, stories, and legends of Scandinavia, is not what I would call a complete or even cohesive compendium, but rather cobbled together vignettes of the Vikings and north men from cold and brutal lands.  Its influence is undeniable across eons and media: Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, which in turn inspire J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and more modernly George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, Square Enix’s famous franchise, most emphatically Final Fantasy VII, BioWare’s Dragon Age, and obviously Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, though all of these titles merely scratch the surface of how deep its inspiration goes.

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Final Fantasy Friday: Practical Magic

Final Fantasy Friday

Forgive my terseness.  It’s been a rough week, and I just woke up from what I suppose could be called a sleep attack.  I usually have something elaborate to say before posing the question, but this week I’ll just ask…

What’s your favorite magic spell?

Ultima is always good for thinning the herd, and Holy is excellent for any shadowy ne’er do wells.  Of course there’s always Meteor or Comet if you want to rain down some fire from heaven (oddly enough, Meteor would be the opposite of Holy at least in FFVII, even though they both originate from the same place).

I suppose I don’t really have one favorite spell, but I definitely spam Ultima as much as I can in FFBE.

What’s your favorite or most used spell in FF?  And more importantly, which one would you choose to cast on your enemies *evil laughter* (Meteor)

30 Day Video Game Challenge: Day 28

Day 1

<–Day 27                                                                                                                Day 29–>

Day 29: Favorite video game developer.

It is with intense annoyance that I have to say Square Enix or as I like to call them Squeenix.  Beginning as Squaresoft, the company nearly became defunct and on the verge of declaring bankruptcy back in the 80s when they released what they thought would be their last game, aptly titled Final Fantasy.  Fortunately for them (but unfortunately for avoiding irony), the title was a huge success and not only for saving the company, but also defined/redefined the genre of (J)RPG.

More than thirty years later, now as Square Enix, they’re still going strong at least in terms of still being active and relevant.  I believe a good fan should also be a good critic, and I have been quite critical of some of Squeenix’s decisions.

This. They decided to make this into a VR game.

But like Nintendo, we keep getting caught…hook, line, and sinker.

I’m so sorry…

Though I do have to admit, I’ve fallen victim to the fad of judging based on other’s accounts, which is what I did with Final Fantasy XIII.  I’ve never played it, but not long after it came out, I hopped on the bashing bandwagon due to listening to people whose opinion I thought was worth something, since they, too, were huge Final Fantasy (especially VII) fans, but I should have known better, based on the derisive things they said about Final Fantasy IX  Thankfully, I’ve met people (and one specific person) who’ve shown me the error of my ways, and though I’ve yet to play XIII, I’m at least going to give a chance.  You’d think by this point in my life I would’ve learned not to judge things entirely on other’s opinions until I try them myself, but that pesky “J” in INFJ likes to rear its head in all instances even when it is most inopportune.

I love to judge, but I need to make sure when I do so, I have all the facts.

So while Squeenix might annoy the hell out of me at times, I still have to begrudgingly admit that they’re my favorite developer.

Honorable mentions to Nintendo and BioWare.

Who is your favorite developer?  Do you have as complicated a history as I do with mine?

<–Day 27                                                                                                                Day 29–>



30 Day Video Game Challenge: Day 27

Day 1

<–Day 26                                                                                                                Day 28–>

Day 27: Most epic scene ever.

I’m sorry.  You know I have to mention one of the most iconic scenes in video game history:

It’s epic for the fact that like Aeris, none of us saw that coming (I’m a terrible person), and the fact that to this day, the rumor mill spins with ways to bring her back and hopes that the Remake will allow it (I really hope it doesn’t).

I was also blown away by Midna’s reveal at the end of Twilight Princess:

I was as dumbstruck as Link.  Though he’s ever the silent protagonist, I think his inability to speak was due to finding the Twilight Princess was even more beautiful than Princess Zelda (imho).  This one is more on my personal epic scale; though I’m sure many of you would agree with me about it, I don’t know if it will wind up in the annals of video game history like FFVII will.

Epic is a subjective term, though there is a cultural consciousness about it.  What one person might consider epic, another might think is mundane, while some things foster a general agreement   The original definition of epic pertains to a long, poetic composition usually centered upon a hero in which a series of great achievements or events is narrated in elevated style.  Going by this both Final Fantasy and Legend of Zelda could be considered epics in their own right, because what are these games but long compositions centered upon heroes where a series of great achievements/events are stylistically played out?  This definition extends to all manner of video games, so even though epic is a specific idea, what one considers epic can be both ubiquitous and intensely personal.

What video game scene wakes your epic sensors?  Do you go by the standard definition of the term or your gut emotion in this determination?

<–Day 26                                                                                                                Day 28–>



30 Day Video Game Challenge: Day 8

Day 1

<–Day 7                                                                                                                    Day 9–>

Day 8: Best soundtrack.

Noooooo!  The impossible question D:  There are so many good soundtracks, and I believe I addressed this question before myself on one of my Final Fantasy Fridays.  There I named FFIV as the game in the franchise with my favorite soundtrack, but VII has many honorable mentions, VI is the game that fully got me into soundtracks in the first place, and Final Fantasy in general just has amazing music.

You can’t talk about soundtracks without bringing up Legend of Zelda, because Zelda is just as good as Final Fantasy when it comes to the music.  Most of the songs on my YouTube writing/editing playlist are from those games.

This medley has gotten me through many an editing session.

This is the best version of Kakariko Village you’re ever going to hear.

This is the most serene song every composed.

This is obviously just a sampling of wonderful music.

So what game has the best soundtrack?  Ironically, impossible for this music lover to answer.  I can hear the merit in any great composition.  Not only that the music perfectly fits whatever mise en scene it’s been written for.

What game/game series do you think has the best soundtrack?  Discussion time!

<–Day 7                                                                                                                    Day 9–>

Final Fantasy Friday: An Un-Final Fantasy Question??

A Final Fantasy (et al) post to welcome you to the glory of Friday (if you don’t have weekends off then may this hopefully brighten the midst of your work week) with more located here!

I made my monthly trek to the bookstore today and picked up a manga based on a recommendation from Mr. Panda and the Well-Red Mage.  It’s for a non-Final Fantasy video game (trust me…I looked to see if they had any Final Fantasy manga, alas, they do not), and when I got home, I did my reading for the day, which included a book about the same non-Final Fantasy video game.  This started the gears in my head turning, because I realized but for Final Fantasy, this would probably be my favorite RPG (like) game.  So this week’s question is thus…

What is your favorite non-Final Fantasy RPG?

If it wasn’t for Final Fantasy, I’d be in more love with The Legend of Zelda, not that I don’t love that series for all its magnificence and music (speaking of which “Hero of Light” aka the end credits from Link to the Past just came on my iPhone).  This is the manga I bought today.

Barnes and Noble has a wonderfully sprawling manga section, but I had no idea Zelda manga even existed.  It was between this one and Majora’s Mask, which I’ll probably purchase next.

I’ve always pegged MM as my favorite Zelda, but I’m not sure anymore.  Twilight Princess is pretty high up there.  I plan to rewatch let’s plays for them all in chronological order when I finish reading Hyrule Historia, but I’ll talk more about this in my State of the Gamer post,

Now, you could argue that Zelda is not an RPG, and it is a debatable point.  I’ve always thought of it as an action-adventure/puzzle game with RPG elements.  Link doesn’t really have a personality outside of being “the Hero,” and he literally serves as a “link” between the player and the game.  You’re not going along for the ride as you do in Final Fantasy and other JRPGs, but rather steering the boat.  Where RPGs like FF are more like the books of the video game world, Legend of Zelda could be considered more of a Choose Your Own Adventure, which…is technically still a book, huh.

Anyway, I think you understand what I mean, but Zelda has enough RPG elements to qualify in my opinion, but Chrono Trigger would be another contender for my favorite non-Final Fantasy RPG, but I wanted to pick a non-Squeenix one as well.  CT has the time loop element like Zelda and FF (it does…look at the first and eighth game, though there’s much more to this assessment than just surface analysis), epic music (or should I say Epoch music), and numerous endings depending on what you do (choose your own ending).  Quite a few of my friends claim this as their favorite RPG, and I can hardly blame them.  I rank it among the greats based on “Time Circuits” alone.

Okay…so this is a little creepy.  I always thought this song was called “Time Circuits,” but when I looked it up, it appears to also have the moniker “Enhasa,” which refers to the Kingdom of Zeal also called the City of Dreams.  One of the books I’m reading just referred to a City of Dreams, as well.  Always wheels within wheels with me or I read so many books and play so many games that coincidences are just bound to occur…like how in the book store I saw a novel called Calamity and immediately thought “Is it from the sky?”  IT WAS!  I literally lolled in the middle of Barnes and Noble.

So what’s your favorite non-Final Fantasy RPG or your favorite RPG is a Final Fantasy is not your favorite.  Let’s discuss in the comments!




Final Fantasy Friday: The Opening Act

A Final Fantasy (et al) post to welcome you to the glory of Friday (if you don’t have weekends off then may this hopefully brighten the midst of your work week) with more located here!

Beginnings are important. Our initially impressions of a story no matter the format/media not only shape how we see it, they’re also a major deciding factor in whether we’ll continue at all.  There’s a reason I have a “passed-based-on-sample” shelf on my Goodreads list.

Final Fantasy is well known not only for its phenomenal openings, but the music that goes along with it.  In fact without such music, the beginning of the games would not have remotely the same amount of impact.

What is your favorite opening theme?

This is a no-brainer for me since my favorite opening theme belongs to my favorite game, Final Fantasy VII, but it exists in good company.  Now, prior to VI (or V, I can’t make a judgment on that one yet), the opening theme to Final Fantasy was the song that’s become synonymous with the series.

Frankly, this ubiquitous masterpiece would’ve been good enough for me.

Adorable side note.  I started playing this, and Cid (my cat) popped his head up from his little bed.  I told him this music is as ubiquitous to the series as his name is :p  Uh oh…I drew attention to myself, and now it’s time to bother me.  Be back in a moment; petting the purrbot

I also must mention how Final Fantasy IX has a “cold opening” where the game starts with the action prior to the opening theme and title, which are always chill inducing.

I’m just as amazed as Vivi.

But of course FFVII gets the gold for me in terms of the music.  It’s possible this is only because of the awe inspiring Distant Worlds version, though the clay they were working with was already prime quality.

If ever there was a melody that put you in the mind of where you were at the moment, the “Opening~Bombing Mission” is that song.  Without even knowing what the game is about, those nine beats at the transition (1:17) tell you that you’re about to take the train ride of your life, and the creeping low tone piano speaks of clandestine dealings and underground activities.  The crescendo at the end of the first verse builds until you envision a mighty locomotive that sweeps you along to an unavoidable destiny where madness, regret, rue, and glory will tangle together until there isn’t an in between.  There is truly no getting off this train.

What’s your favorite opening theme?  Let’s discuss in the comments!

Note: I realized this is kind of my replacement for the Question of the Week; it’s just more Final Fantasy based lol.  I think eventually I’ll incorporate other gaming related questions into it, but I’ll still call it Final Fantasy Friday since that’s what it stems from, and there’s an extremely high probability that my answer will involve Final Fantasy anyway 😉