Saga of Tanya the Evil, or Youjo Senki, is an interesting anime. It's a tale about a young girl joining the military, climbing the ladder and becoming a high-ranking officer and one of the military's best soldiers. Sounds kind of interesting at first. Now, what if I said that she's was originally a modern-day salaryman reincarnated as this little girl by a petty God after saying he was an Atheist. Wait, what?
Isn't that cute, she just wants to devour your soul
First off, I'm not entirely sure why this is a thing in the first place, but Tanya was originally male. In her previous life, she was a modern-day salaryman, working your standard 9-5 desk job. He was pretty ruthless at that, basically the guy that the brass go to when they want someone fired. Well, one of those guys he fired wasn't really happy about it, pushing him in front of an oncoming subway and cutting his life short. Upon death, he meets God, although he refuses to believe it's God, instead referring him as Being X. The fact that he doesn't believe in God kind of pisses off God, so the guy is punished by being reincarnated in an alternate world as a little girl, retaining his knowledge and memories of his previous life. Being born in the alternate universe equivalent of World War 1, this world has magic. Tanya grows up in this universe's version of Germany, showing signs of high aptitude for magic. Seeing that being in the military is the quickest way to a successful life in this world, Tanya quickly joins the military at a young age, using her knowledge of World War 1 to help with tactics and predict certain events. With that knowledge, the with the fact that she's still cold and ruthless as she was in her old life, she quickly climbs the ranks in the military. However, she wants a cushy life, the life of those high ranking officers that never leave the strategy room. This new life is suppose to be a punishment though, and God is going to do everything in his power to make sure Tanya goes through endless trials until she's forced to believe in him, good and bad. Man, God is kind of a petty asshole.
Tanya herself is quite the interesting character. You quickly forget the fact that she was once a grown man, and see her as the psychotic little girl that she really is. In most shows, you'd hate this character. She would normally be seen as the villain that uses her cuteness to deceive everyone around her. Instead, she's your hero (I guess you call her that), and her levels of villainy reach levels that you'd normally find a cartoon villain, you can't help but laugh sometimes at how ridiculous it gets. The first episode, she decides to nuke the enemy squad because she wants to hurry up and go home to a decent cup of coffee. And the fact that she's a little girl doesn't really slow down her progress. In fact, it often helps her sometimes. Deceiving her rivals in the military, making them think she's just a sweet little girl. She also scares the crap out of the new recruits when they try to get cocky around her because she's a little girl. Also, since she was a bit of a bookworm in her previous life, she studies up on military law, finding all kinds of loopholes to commit all sorts of ruthless acts while still technically not committing war crimes. Taunting rebel civilians into attacking soldiers so that she can legally attack them, she's forced to announce a sneak attack so she uses her childish voice to make the announcement sound like a child's prank (this world has some weird chivalry rules to war). It's kind of interesting to see how ruthless this little girl can go. And another thing that makes Tanya enjoyable, she never really wins in the end. All Tanya wants is to settle down and live a cushy life, she wants to live peacefully in these tough times. However, everyone, including God himself, refuses to let her get what she wants. This little girl can never catch a break.
How can this be the face of a war criminal?
While Tanya is the main character of the series, there's a few other characters that tag along in Tanya's misadventures. Probably the most notable person would be her second-in-command, Visha (I am not going to bother trying to spell or pronounce her name). Now the first thing you might notice about this person is, "Holy crap those eyes are massive and creepy looking", and you'd be right. To be honest, Visha looks like a character that was suppose to be in another anime, but somehow ended up on this show. She's a sweet and loving girl that always sees the good in Tanya, despite how evil that little girl is. And her eyes are massive, they look take up half her face. It's to the point where promotional material released a sexy picture of her, and all I could look at was her eyes. Still, she's an interesting character, especially when paired up with a character like Tanya. It's hard to tell whether Tanya actually cares about her or not, but this moe-faced soldier definitely looks up to Tanya as a war hero.
I know I should be looking elsewhere, but all I see are those eyes
Well, that kind of wraps most of this review up. There's not all that much to this particular show. It's 12 episodes long, there's a chibi short that goes along with each episode that gives some comedic details to certain events in the corresponding episode, and a movie was just announced to be in production. I would personally recommend the sub, with Aoi Yuuki providing the voice of Tanya (Hibiki from Symphogear, Madoka from Madoka Magica), but the dub is still pretty decent if you prefer to not read subtitles. It's a dumb action anime with entertaining characters, and many of my reviews will be a lot of that, I watch what I like, dumb action shows and comedies. And with that, I'll leave you all with Tanya giving a prayer. Thanks for reading. :D
As my username goes, I watch a lot of anime, an unhealthy amount. I've found a lot of shows that were pretty great. I've found a lot of shows that I wasn't super fond of. After being pointed to this part of the site, I figured I'd give this a shot, see how things go. If this goes well, I'll try to put up more reviews of other shows. Now, it's time to raise our determination to fist, I'm gonna start things off with a review of one of my personal favorite shows, Symphogear.
To start off, this is a magical girl anime with tons of over-the-top action scenes, strangely entertaining characters, and catchy J-Pop soundtrack. The show is currently wrapping up it's fourth season and a fifth season is already in the works, so it's clear that this series is going strong. Sure it's not perfect, there's quite a few moments that leave you groaning and rolling your eyes, but the show is just a blast to watch overall. All you need to do is kick back, turn your brain off, and enjoy the spectacle.
One thing that many viewers will notice is that the show involves a lot of music. In order to activate their powers, the main characters must sing in order to synchronize with their weapons, using them almost like a tuning fork, so a good chunk of the cast consists of voice actresses that are also popular idols, such as Nana Mizuki (Hinata Hyuga from Naruto), Aoi Yuuki (Madoka Kaname from Madoka Magica), and Yoko Hikasa (Rias Gremory from Highschool DxD). The music is emphasized so heavily that there are times that the concert scenes seem to have more of a budget than a lot of other important scenes. The majority of the music is pretty catchy though, each character's songs having a different theme. For example, the girl that fights with guns and artillery has a bit more of a rock/metal tone to her songs, while the girl that fights with a katana has more of a classical Japanese tone to her songs.
Another thing you notice about the show as you watch, some of the weapons get kind of ridiculous. Sure you've got your typical weapons, girl with katana, girl who punches, girl who fires guns. However, things start to get strange like sword divekicks and guns becoming massive missiles. There's even one girl that fights with saw blades (I feel that someone watched Gurren Lagann and decided that saw blades will be the next big thing after drills). The main heroine, at the start of the series her weapon is arguably the weakest of them all, that being her fists, but after a bit of training and a few moments where she goes berserk, she quickly gets to the point where her fists turn into giant pile bunkers and she's punching her way through mountains.
As for the story, it's kind of forgettable. The first season feels like it's clearly drawing off the popularity of Madoka Magica, with the series having a bit of a dark and angsty tone to it, an ancient goddess summoning otherworldly... things while trying to build up a tower of babel to take down the moon to end God's curse on humanity and allow her to ascend into godhood (actually I think she's trying to get some of God's D). Okay, so the show starts to get weird by the end of the first season once the villain reveals her true plans, and the show starts to roll with that weirdness when the second season introduces their next villain, a scientist that you can totally trust by the end of the first episode. The mad scientist steals the show with his constant loud and violent outbursts, his twisted desire to become a hero, and by the fact that he's voiced by Tomokazu Sugita (Gintoki Sakata from Gintama). As the series goes on, the premise continues to get weirder as the threats get bigger, and as a result, the action scenes get bigger and more explosively entertaining.
Of course the show isn't perfect, there's a few parts that aren't that great. I've already mentioned that the first season is a bit angsty and drags on a little as the show kind of tries to figure out what it wants to be. The second season has a few moments where you're kind of bored because the villain might've stolen the show a bit too much. Season 3 has a sub-plot where the main heroine reconnects with her estranged father, the only problem is that he's a dirtbag and the show makes it obvious that we have to care about him. There's also a brief point in the third season where the main heroine is refusing to fight, not exactly something the viewer wants to deal with while watching a show that's popular for it's fight scenes.
So, is the show perfect? No. Is it fun to watch? Yes. I would definitely love to see more people talking about it. I personally love the show for how dumb the story gets and how crazy that action scenes get. The music is catchy, there are enough characters for most viewers to find a favorite (best gurl), and it's always fun to wonder how the show is going to top it's last crazy stunt from the last episode. If you can get passed the rough patches, I feel that a lot of people can come to enjoy this show. I hope I gave a decent review, I hope that I've encouraged some of you to go out and watch this show, and I hope I didn't spoil too much of the plot (however much you care about it).
And before I go, I'd like to leave you all with this. ;)
Pain Indie Ass - Freedom Planet - 🎶 I want to break free~! 🎶 -
-Second Pain Indie Ass review (two years later...)-
I'm reviewing this game as someone who has both played the entire thing, and earned every... single... Achievement. As before, I will be looking at the gameplay, art, level design, replayability, and anything else that may come to mind as I'm writing this review.
Freedom Planet is a nice little Sonic-esque indie platformer developed by GalaxyTrail. There's a good reason for it seeming like Sonic The Hedgehog: it originally started life as a fan game before becoming a standalone thing in its own right. This game can definitely be a challenge in places, especially some of the Achievements you can get, but for the most part it's a very simple "get to the right of each section as fast as you can" game. The (video proof) world record speedruns for each character are: Lilac - 32 minutes 47 seconds, Carol - 32 minutes 26 seconds, Milla - 30 minutes 38 seconds. I'd been playing it for thirty-nine hours before unlocking every last Achievement.
I don't know how long I've owned this game, or what I paid for it. I'm pretty sure I got it in some bundle or another, or at least a sale, so I know I got it for less than the full price. It's definitely worth at least what I paid for it, though.
Edit: I do not know exactly when I purchased this game or what for, but it was redeemed on Steam, via a code from a third party sale site, on the 24th of March, 2015.
Honestly, it looks like some of the older Sonic games, having similar graphics, though possibly a slightly higher quality. It has been far too long since I've played Sonic, but I feel like the comparison is a reasonable one. I actually like that it looks and feels a little retro, it makes me feel kinda nostalgic, I suppose? Overall, if you like the art style of 16-bit games, you'd probably enjoy looking at this. I think it definitely suits that style better. If it looked like some of the modern Sonic games, I don't think it would look as good; the 2D style just... fits.
Much like SMB, levels vary in size. All have several separate sections, but some feel longer either because they are, or because you get caught up in a swarm of enemies that slows you down immensely. Especially in later levels, you can get some troublesome to deal with enemies, but overall it's nothing overly taxing.
The level design is is a pretty straightforward "make it to the next section"/"run to the right", for the most part. There is a little backtracking in a few levels, and if you want certain Achievements, or sometimes a decent 'power-up' in a level, you have to go off the beaten path a bit. Mostly, though, it's just like any standard platformer game.
As previously stated, there are enemies in this game, and environmental hazards. Unlike in SMB, there is very little that can one-shot you, thanks to having a health bar. There are only two things that can kill you outright, and both are stage hazards, not enemies.
There are 'glitches'(?) that speedrunners can take advantage of to get through the game far quicker than I feel I ever could, but I've only ever used two. One completely by accident that resulted in a softlock of the game (no crash, but unable to continue), and one deliberately to take out a certain boss far quicker than I could have doing it legitimately. Then again, if it's left in the game, why shouldn't I use little tricks to make it easier/quicker?
As with most games I've played, this one can be played with either a keyboard or a controller. I personally used an Xbox 360 controller to get myself through this game, since at the time I played it, I was used to using it for a certain fighting game that I may review at a later date. I have not tried using the keyboard that much, though I suppose I should make an attempt, in the interests of seeing how it compares...
Gameplay is straight up simple; you only have to use the arrows/WASD and three other keys, or the analogue stick(/maybe D-pad works? I don't use it.) and three other buttons, which I believe you can customise. Avoid or defeat enemies as you run right, trying to make your way past each section of a stage until you get to the boss, then kick its ass. Boom, done. Oh, most stages have mini-bosses too. You have to kick their asses too if you want to get past them, with like... one exception.
There are no special bonuses for completing a level in under a certain amount of time, but there is a way to get extra lives, or bonus 'power ups' at the end of most stages, if you get a certain collectable in that stage. There are, however, Achievements for completing each level in under a set time. Yes, I have them all. Yes, some of them were a total Pain Indie Ass to get. xD
Calling this replayable is dubious. You have three characters available that all handle very differently, along with a few character-specific Achievements, which means if you're going for completion, you definitely have to play the whole thing at least three times, once for each character. There are also (on Steam at least) leaderboards for level time, and crystals collected, so I suppose it could be worth replaying for the sake of improving your time. And certainly you may have to replay it to get all the Achievements, if you take too long on a level, or miss a collectible card, or screw up an Achievement. But I think it's more than reasonable to believe you could get every Achievement in the three playthroughs.
It's not an overly long game, but it is fun. I managed to get thirty-nine hours out of it just going for every Achievement. It does also give you an option to wipe your data (which I haven't tried yet), which means you can try and get all the Achievements again. I assume it only deletes the in game data, not the Achievements on Steam, or Trophies on PS4.
You May Like This Game If:
You enjoy platformers.
You enjoy nostalgia/retro throwbacks/16-bit games/2D Sonic.
You like playing around with a variety of characters with different handling.
You want a nice, easy game to relax a bit with.
This game was enjoyable, and I would definitely suggest that anyone who can play it does. Even if you just try out the demo version or something, if it's still available anywhere. Also, just to let everyone know, there is a sequel currently in development, which should be released some time in late 2017/early 2018; I'm cautiously optimistic, because I liked the first game. It's a great game with a few challenging Achievements, but it's just a little short.
I'm only reviewing games I actually like, huh? xD
(Review edited to follow ToS. Whoops...)
Other Reviews PIA1 - PIA2
Pain Indie Ass - Super Meat Boy -POST 666 MOTHERFUCKERS!-
-FIRST EcchiDreams REVIEW-
So far I have manged to finish (though not yet complete) only the Forest Chapter, which is only the first of seven, so this is by no means a complete review. For the most part, I will be looking at the gameplay, art, level design, replayability, and anything else that may come to mind as I'm writing this review.
Super Meat Boy is an infuriatingly difficult/die-a-lot indie platformer developed by Team Meat. This game is definitely a challenge, though a great time waster. At least, it challenged me. I've seen someone speed run the entire main game in under two hours (for those interested, I may link the aforementioned speed run). I've been playing it for five times that and am not even close to finishing. In fact, some perspective. In two hours, I had only managed to beat nineteen out of twenty levels in the first chapter, though ten of those were A+, and I unlocked two of the extra characters.
I've had this game since Christmas Day 2014, when I got it on Winter Sale for a mere fifty-four pence. Well, when I say I got it, I mean it was bought for me by a sibling, but nevertheless I have owned it since then. In my ten hours of gameplay, it has inspired more than a few rage quits, but mostly it's just made me want to try harder, over and over. In my view, it definitely suffers from Minecrafts "one more block" addiction, despite the rage it often induces.
Where to begin? SMB has quite basic graphics, in an almost minimalist style. It reminds me a little of screen printing, perhaps a slightly pop art vibe, where everything is rendered in as few colours as possible while still maintaining detail. It takes only a glance to say "that is a tree", "that is a rock", "that is a rabbit". Due to a lesser focus on "make the game look as realistic as possible", a nice balance was struck between pretty graphics and not distracting from the game play, where sometimes in a game like Skyrim or Fallout you may get sidetracked by sightseeing.
Levels vary in size, as with most games. Some fit on a single screen while others are either taller, wider, or both. The advantage to smaller levels is a clear objective, as well as less in the way to kill you. Usually. Even in some of the small levels I died. A lot.
Nevertheless, the level design is fairly linear A-B, or A-B(for key/button)-C. Some do involve backtracking, though, in an A-B-A, or even more than that sometimes. The only time you really have to go out of your way is to get bandages (used to unlock characters) and portals(often the same), but even then sometimes you can get bandages in a straight run.
There are few enemies, as such, with most hazards being environmental or objects, but there are some that follow your character, and pretty much everything can kill you.
I had found a bug, though I do not know if it is still present, in which you can sometimes clip through certain walls if you're running. I don't know if this is level design, a bug elsewhere, or even something deliberately put in to fuck with players. From how difficult the game is in general, I wouldn't put that one past the devs.
I'll get this out of the way: You can play with a keyboard or a gamepad, at least last time I played it. I got used to playing it with the keyboard, which is usually my preference anyway, though I did try it with the gamepad a few times. Whatever you use is up to you.
Gameplay is fairly basic, in a fun-but-infuriating kind of way. Run, jump, and (try not to) die your way to Bandage Girl, the damsel-in-distress du jour. There are plenty of things trying to stop you, just for the fun of it. You have to compete with circular saws, crumbling blocks, projectile saw blades, salt, the edges of the screen, and the list goes on.
If you're lucky enough to finish the level with an A+ grade (by beating the level in under a certain time), you unlock the Dark World counterpart to that level. While I won't go into it too much, these are basically more difficult versions of the original level, in one way or another.
I don't know that I'd really say this game is replayable. Certainly it encourages you to A+ the levels and collect the bandages (at least if you're a completionist), which may require more than one playthrough of the levels. Some of them, for example, you cannot A+ and collect the bandage in the same run. Others, it's just hard to A+ on your first try.
You'll get plenty of gameplay out of it, but more than replay it's a game that may make you rage but still somehow draw you back. I would probably play it more than once, and anyone looking at speed running it would have to to get used to the game, work out optimal routes, and so on.
You May Like This Game If:
You enjoy platformers.
You enjoy difficult games.
You like watching player characters die excessively.
You want to watch someone else suffer, for personal amusement.
I like everything about this game. It's infuriating and makes me hate it, but the same infuriation is what drags you back and drives you to work harder. I would definitely recommend this game. To pretty much anyone. Especially for "Why would you recommend this game to me you asshole?" comments.
(Review edited to follow ToS. Whoops...)
PIA1 - PIA2
First, the game takes up WAY more space than it says on the app store! When you first start up the game, you'll be notified that over 90 MB of extra data must be downloaded! That wasn't a big problem for me, but, if you have a lot of stuff on your tablet, you may have to delete some stuff, or transfer stuff to an SD card(the Kindle Fire doesn't have that capability, but the game is available for other tablets, too.).
With the download out of the way, the game hopefully takes you to a loading screen(the first time I downloaded it, it kept crashing, so I had to delete it, then redownload it.). After loading, you will get to see the "once upon a time" intro(I forgot what episode they used that for.). After another loading screen, Twilight Sparkle descends into Ponyville via a hot air balloon. You'll be seeing this balloon quite a bit. After a tutorial, which requires you to build a windmill, hire Twilight Sparkle to work there, collect Bits from the windmill, and "welcome(the game's way of saying "purchase.")" Bon Bon and Mrs. Cakes, you will be left to explore Ponyville at your leisure. However, there are many quests to be done.
The game is reminiscent of FarmVille, but it has a storyline. Nightmare Moon is attempting to shroud Ponyville in eternal night, and you are tasked with gathering The Elements Of Harmony in order to stop her. This is accomplished by activating various "Element Stones," which are scattered around Ponyville. This requires Element Shards, which can be obtained in various ways, the easiest of which is by collecting from shops. Once you reach Level 15, however, you gain access to a separate storyline, which revolves around the Royal Wedding. This also allows you to go to Canterlot, where there are more shops to build, and more ponies to "welcome(there's that word again! Be patient; I'm going somewhere with this.)." In addition to that, the game now allows you to play a mini-game based on the movie Equestria Girls. The objective is simply to make your character of choice dance.
I have yet to complete the game. In fact, due to the nature of the game, I doubt that is possible. However, these are some of the good things I've noticed about the game.
There's a myriad of ponies that can be "welcomed." The list includes The Mane 6, The Cutie Mark Crusaders, Vinyl Scratch(referred to as "DJ Pon3" in-game.), The Great And Powerful Trixie("Trixie The Magnificent."), Photo Finish, almost the entire Apple family, Octavia Melody, and even Doctor Hooves! Derpy is in the game, but she can't be "welcomed." She hides in a cardboard box. If you find her, she reveals herself and gives you Bits, and, occasionally, even a Gem(more on this in a minute.)! Also, the music in the game, while quite loud, is pretty good! Plus, some important characters(The Mane 6, Mrs. Cakes, and others.) talk when you tap them. However, with good, there's also quite a bit of bad. You're about to see why I've been treating the word "welcome" like a swear word.
There are 3 different types of currency in-game. Bits, Gems, and Hearts. Bits are the standard currency, and the easiest to obtain. You can earn them by collecting from shops, playing the Magic Wings mini-game(required to level up one of your ponies.), playing the Balloon Pop game(once a day, or anytime for 10 Gems, or 30 Hearts.), or as a gift from Princess Celestia when you level up. Gems are the premium currency, and are harder to obtain. As I said before, Derpy sometimes gives you one. You also get them sometimes as rewards for quests, alongside Bits and Experience Points(speaking of quests, they tend not to reward you NEARLY enough for what they require you to do!). At higher levels, you may also get one upon leveling up. Hearts are fairly easy to obtain, but you can only get them one way: sharing your progress on Facebook or GameLoft Live. Now, Bits and Gems can also be purchased, but the price isn't cheap. I actually did purchase Gems during a sale, at a price of $2 for 55 Gems. This normally would cost $5. Now, I'm fine with having to pay extra for things such as DLC, but not if it's REQUIRED TO BEAT THE GAME!! Rarity and Rainbow Dash both cost Gems to buy. Also, there's the matter of the Balloon Pop game I mentioned earlier.
There are certain characters who can only be unlocked via that game, and only by paying Gems to do so. You are presented with a screen full of balloons, which you must pop. Once you've obtained something from 3 balloons(some of them are empty; these don't count towards your total.), the mini-game ends. Ponies only unlockable via Balloon Pop include Dr. Hooves, The Great And Powerful Trixie, Daring Do, and Photo Finish. Not to mention, you may not win the character you want, and you may not even win any character at all! Risky, but rewarding, especially since you can get Princess Celestia this way for only the 10 Gems it costs to play, whereas she would normally only be available at a cost ot OVER 900 GEMS!!!!
In conclusion, if you like games like Oregon Trail: American Settler and FarmVille, this game will likely be worth your time! You don't necessarily even have to be a brony or a pegasister to enjoy it. However, getting the most out of it requires patience, time, luck, and some spare cash. I enjoy games with variety, but not when they try to screw you out of your hard-earned money.
Please note that this article was originally posted up on December 2nd 2013; we have since redone our articles system and moved the review - which has given it a new "Published Date". Apologies for the inconvenience.
Dungeon Fighter Online is an Action/Beam 'Em Up MMORPG for the PC which is currently in Alpha release by the South Korean based Developers NeoPle. A member here, @MegaZero64 (whom I've known personally for many years) suggested Dungeon Fighter Online (DFO) and gave me a link to download the Anti-Cheat shield and downloaded so I could play it. @MegaZero64 is none other than DatLoli. @MegaZero64 may release a review based on his perspective as a seasoned player, even before NeoPle took the project on.
Review may contain bad language.
I have to admit at first I wasn't sure what I was looking at, honestly. I even said to myself "Fuck that doesn't look like something I want to play, ever." I tried MapleStory, made by the people originally behind this game Nexon, I will talk about that later. But even as I was typing my initial impressions I was thinking about events that happened earlier this year; short version of the story behind this is in the quote below.
Basically events earlier this February gave me a chance to learn about my fiancee's family more. I *TRULY* kept an open mind and for once; and I got to learn about them; they got to learn about me but most importantly I got a chance to speak to her dad about stuff and life. He reinforced what I learnt, unknowingly in loads of different ways. Like making me try something new (Like adding red wine to beef while I was frying it!) I honestly did a lot of stuff that I never did before. Sure I didn't like all of it but I did like the trying new experiences and ultimately I decided that I'd keep more of an open mind.
So as I was saying; I remembered to try something new. Hell "You never know. You might fucking like it." So I said "Fuck it. Bro; I'll at least try it." To cut a long story short; Good decision. I went to the website, and connected my Facebook account to it (I'm not sure if that's mandatory; it could be optional). It wanted to download a "Plugin" as well as HackShield by AhnLab Inc, as an administrator I wasn't overly happy about it but I took the plunge still. So downloading even on my own connection was a bit slow at first. In total the game used 3.21GB on my hard drive; but I don't know if it grows the more areas I visit (and thus cached). There was a small issue originally - I had no idea what I was doing. Ultimately if you don't have a fast connection downloading it may take a while.
System Requirements (Curtsy of System Requirements Lab):
CPU: Pentium 3 800 MHz or Higher (Athlon)
CPU Speed: 800 MHz
RAM: 128 MB
OS: Windows 2000
Video Card: nVidia GeForce 4 MX 440
Sound Card: Yes
Free Disk Space: 5 GB
CPU: Pentium 4: 3.0 GHz or Higher
CPU Speed: 3.0 GHz
RAM: 512 MB
OS: Windows XP or Better [in fact you shouldn't be using XP - Friends don't let friends use Windows XP.]
Video Card: GeForce FX Series with Support for Pixel Shader 1.4
Sound Card: Yes
Free Disk Space: 10 GB
Once I was actually in game I found myself going through to select a server; however I selected the wrong on (A more advanced server) it's best to go for the Beginner Servers and advance up. I didn't know this but I do now. I should point out that I have played MapleStory before, years and years ago for all of an hour. It didn't hold my interest (And still doesn't). I had started with a Male Fighter Class - I usually find the best way for me to start as I've said before, is if I have the choice my first character of any game will be male (like me) and will be a Gunner (Or someone who uses heavy weaponry a lot, the exception to the rule for this was PayDay2, a review for another time.) I called my character Tripp (surprised it let me, to be honest) and off I went.
As soon as you select your character and name it you're shown some backstory associated with your character. It gives you a feel for the game and I'm told that it's different per character type. I think this is a good touch and it's very well done.
I found myself going through a Tutorial of sorts. Mashing keys on my keyboard I'd normally never use in this way. Before I knew it I completed the tutorial but still had many, many questions about how to do the simplest stuff, luckily I had MegaZero64 over on Steam Voice Chat answering every annoying question I possibly could; like a good 'newb'. But I took attention and really the learning curve wasn't all that bad actually. I truly feel the game was completely unbalanced, in the gamer's favour. but really "it gets more challenging; and a hell of a lot more fun" (and it's already pretty fun) or so I am told.
Two hours went by in a flash, and by then I was already picking up the game at a fantastic learning curve. I figured out that I didn't need to mash keys and that really I could do some impressive combo-stuff. And BOY did I take that chance. I like to think my little Digital Tripp was learning as I was learning.
Now apparently that they do a lot of resets; or have done resets in the past but as you all know if I had a gripe about this I'd be; 1) Hypocritical and 2) Stupid or ignorant. As I said it is in alpha phase at the moment (Not even in Beta) so I expect shit like this to crop up from time to time, and honestly it doesn't feel like an Alpha. Sure some it looks very Beta (coming soon stuff), for a free Alpha it functioned, operated and preformed beautifully, I explain this later. I should point out it is something you can play on your own; but it is much better with a friend or four.
Unfortunately Neppy then informed me that it was 2AM and she was going to bed. She said she didn't mind me staying up and continue playing but I decided to call it a night and off to bed I went.
... Moving on to the next day (Sorry everyone! xP)
After I played an unrelated game (already mentioned, tut tut) to do some much needed "Anger Venting" (Things during the day piss me off sometimes. Non-Neppy related things.) I got into a Voice Conversation again and hopped back on to DFO. My second day kicked ass.
We went off to do some quests and kill hordes of ... By this point Fodder, and bagged ourselves a tonne of loot and gold. We even met Gabriel a few times (Trader after the boss fight) which I've learnt is a very good and uncommon thing. Eventually I upgraded my skills and leveled them up and got new weapons (ditching the cannon), armour and even a hat!
My Armour loadout towards the end was a Ring Shoulder (Heavy Armour), Red Tiger Leather Coat, Red Tiger Trousers, Leather Strap, Sya Overshoes, Cross bowgun (Weapon) Used Cotton Arm Guard, Durable Plantain Ring and an Avatar Item Navy Duty Cap. In this play time I figured out how to use my classes better, and started working on putting them closer together so I could string better combos and ultimately do horrible, horrible things to the even more Fodder. My skills? Rising Shot Lv5, M-137 Gatling Gun Lv3, M-3 Flamethrower Lv1, RX-78 Land Runner Lv4 and two more slots that I paid absolutely no attention to what so ever because by this point as I said; the game was unbalanced in our favour.
The game was no longer about mindlessly mashing keys, sure I wasn't immersed in the storyline (Might have something to do with the Spam "Buy Gold" bots that seem to be plaguing it) but I was having so much fun. This time I spent a good 3-4 hours if not more, and even went through the 02:00 - 03:00GMT invasion of the town, which as the title says the town becomes invaded with creatures which you have to kill and drive back. I learnt a lot about the mobs or enemies that were to come; as well as ways of dealing with them. MechaTau however = Screwed. All fantasy of it being lopsidedly unbalanced in my favour was smacked in my face as it came crashing back into reality, this game is going to get tough later on and I need more and better party tricks.
MegaZero64 and I contributed 26-27 wins or so for the nearly 50,000 wins that the server had. That gives you some idea how many people play this game, and that was one server. I enjoyed it a hell of a lot and I would definitely rush to do it again, it's very rewarding especially after questing and looting for hours and it was a great way to end the second night.
You hold down CTRL and click the enemy you want to fight (Depending on level, so watch out for what works and what doesn't. It's a great way of earning experience.
After the battle the next thing I noticed was how nice a lot of people were. And I noticed that the community snubs and dubs the enemy as Nexon, (I am largly unaware of what's going on but from what I was told; I can see why) but really they were thanking and congratulating everyone for taking part and winning (We reached our target, collectively).
Perhaps this game has something big in store. I don't know. But I could play it over and over again and that's good. Also as far as I am aware there is nothing officially in game that you can buy to advance yourself quicker, and whilst this is because it's an Alpha I actually LOVE this model. I hate Pay2Play, I hate Pay2Advance and Pay2BeAhead. The best things in life really are free, so; NeoPle - I give you free advertising. This is the first review I've written for something that I actually genuinely liked. I know NeoPle will likely introduce something to pay for the service; but right now it's awesome, it's free and stable (at least for me).
Lastly though, the negative stuff; beware of scammers. As with all MMORPG's I'm sure, don't accept trades until you know what you're doing. People will try ripping you off, it's inevitable. Spambots are fucking annoying and make the chat practically useless, as they pretty much flood the chat across all servers and can even bypass mute/blocking, which makes the Blocking quite pointless to, seeing as the person you block can just buy Megaphones and keep talking to you. Not good. The Tutorial is lacking, a lot. It didn't cover or convey a reasonable message to me about the UI (User Interface) and such. Or it did and I lost focus or attention on it, the UI isn't clear on a lot of things but once you know it's there, you pretty much know where it is. The option to full-screen should be put on the settings menu in my opinion so it is switch-able. All minor and relatively petty things that I am sure will be patched or sorted in one way or another and NeoPle should be forgiven for that considering.
It's learning curve is actually quite excellent.
For an Alpha it's feature rich, virtually bug free (As far as I could tell, although I know there's no such thing, really.)
Its got a nice neutral sound track and awesome battle/boss music tracks.
The community is friendly, from what I've seen although very random sometimes.
No disconnects. Their servers are pretty solid.
Character Backstory is clear and concise. Yet optional. You can skip it.
Good for players new and old to the series.
The Spambots. Oh fucking hell the Spambots. Abusing Megaphoning.
No option (at least I could find) of hiding the chat. I believe it should be an option.
Tutorial is lacking. Some of the most basic features are not in there.
Option to fullscreen isn't made clear, to be honest it should be.
There was one NPC who would literally die if someone didn't love him or whatever. That kid needs to see a psychiatrist, immediately. Like I would literally die if I didn't type that.
The Anti-Cheat System it downloads and installs on the computer is dubious at best and in my research of it, it's plagued with problems.
All in all the game wins it for me by being virtually bug free, feature rich, well thought out and makes you the player think about what to add to your character with varying bonuses. All in all it's the best damn Alpha I've ever seen (Well it's in the top 10. Kerbal Space Program, Take on Mars and Minecraft were/are also awesome in Alpha).
This is no an official endorsement from EcchiDreams. But the personal endorsement of a member of staff who happened to like the game. I will say under good faith; I was not asked to write a review nor was I paid. I genuinely think it's good, ultimately I think the game might be just the sort of thing people who come to EcchiDreams would play, and I highly (and personally) encourage you to "Give it a go." I haven't found Ecchi or Hentai in it, but I'm a newb so take that as you will.
Please note that this article was originally posted up on May 23rd 2014; we have since redone our articles system and moved the review - which has given it a new "Published Date". Apologies for the inconvenience.
To start; I’d like to make it clear that I have no personal, or professional relationship with the developers. I have not received money, or any rewards (Digital, Material, Sexual or otherwise) to give this review. However I do have a personal bias for Frontier Developments, as I have stated in my teaser. Being a massive fan of Frontier: Elite II, I have been waiting for at least a decade for a new game in the series and here it finally is. Yes; I realise this isn’t a Game Reviews site, and it’s just a section within a Hentai community of all places but what can I say, EcchiDreams is pretty diverse, but not at the expense of ethical practices.
Minimum System Requirements are as follows:
Quad Core CPU (4 x 2Ghz)
4 GB System RAM (more is always better)
DX 10 hardware GPU with 1GB video ram
Nvidia GTX 260
Continuous Internet Connection (Internet = Always On)
With four hundred billion stars, some people will say “But even if I play online, and even if everyone on Earth played and didn’t stick to one system it’d feel empty” but I’d say “Elite Dangerous makes you appreciate the unfathomable vastness of space, where you can explore and may never see human’s ever again, if you so wished and I think to be able to explore gallivant around the Galaxy is a very generous trade off… In my case I’m probably getting a very sweet deal”. There is a sense of pride and wonder when you are exploring a system that potentially no one has ever been in before, and perhaps no one will ever go to. Elite: Dangerous is set in 3301 (34th Century).
Graphically speaking Elite: Dangerous is inspiring, each point of light is an actual star within the universe, unlike the X-Series in which it seems like a fixed image wrapped around your view. Nebulae and even the galactic core gets bigger the closer you travel to them too, which really adds to the all immersion of the game.
As for resolutions, even though there aren’t monitors capable of displaying it the game can be played on 4k, 8k and even 16k resolutions. I personally use 2715x1527 (DSR by Nvidia) on a 1920x1080 screen, ultra settings (of course) and sometimes I get lost in the stunning visuals from time to time. Stars look almost fluid like, and speaking of which - every planet follows a real time orbit which means if you are in orbit of a planet and wait long enough you’ll see Day and Night cycles, and this is true with stations, some of which the planet eclipse’s the systems star which causes night to fall on them. The level of detail and design is absolutely breathtaking when you stop to look at it. I am concerned by the lack of lighting on the dark side of a planet, from cities that you’d expect to see on Earth. But from what I read this morning this will be added into the next update.
Music and sounds is by far where Elite: Dangerous knocks most games I’ve played out of the ballpark. The satisfying “Pop” when a ship explodes, the sounds of the engines (which is different in every ship I have tried so far) to the weapons systems - absolutely amazing. I have included a video of actual game play (my game play) which shows what I am talking about. Although the one thing I do have complaints about here is the quality of VoIP, which leaves a lot to be desired.
Elite: Dangerous features a fully dynamic economy and galaxy. Meaning what we (as players) do, does affect the system or galaxy (if the “thing” is big enough to) in a number of ways. As of yet I’m not sure if this is a good thing or not, as it’s a computer game I suspect an exploit in something is going to unfairly balance something and cause the carefully stacked deck of cards to come crashing down. But this as far as I am aware hasn’t happened yet, so fingers crossed?
Something a lot of people have complained about is the Docking Mechanics, now call me a fanboy but I say “Learn how to fucking dock then” and word of advice; don’t completely trust the Auto Docking Computer either - the one time I took my eyes off of it, was the one time it did something really fucked up and got stuck inside the station’s textures… How the hell it managed that - I have no idea (I wasn’t looking), certainly don’t take your eyes off it when using it with a Lakon Type 6, because that bitch will skid across the docking pad like butter in a frying pan. The Classical music (Blue Danube) is a nice touch and feel like a economically privileged bastard when I’m using it, perhaps the only time I will feel that way.
Controls took a little while to get used to, but once I got used to them they’re almost second nature, although I did change the mouse behaviour and tweaked the A and D keys for rolling to more fit my style of playing, the keys are fully customisable and whilst I haven’t had chance to try it out yet- the 360 controller does work quite well with it although a specialised Joystick and Throttle is supposedly the best way to (and the way in which your character) operate(s) the ship, but I can’t justify paying for one of those when my current set up works just nicely. Unfortunately one complain I have here with the GUI is when Hardpoints are deployed, let’s say I have a beam laser on my primary and missiles on my secondary. Primary is triggered by the left button and secondary is triggered by the right button. So why in Gaben’s name is Primary put on the right of the screen and secondary put on the left? That doesn’t seem very intuitive at all.
Then we get to Gameplay Mechanics… Currently you start off in a small Sidewinder (or Eagle if you got the Beta, like I did - I still don’t condone Pre-Ordering especially after Egosoft’s debacle) and 1,000 credits. You’re in a space station (LHS 3447 for most people, for some reason I stated at LHS 1914) and what you do from there is your business. Start a trading job, do missions, be a courier, pirate, bounty hunter, explorer, asteroid miner, whatever! The World(STRIKE) Galaxy is your oyster. It’s “Level” progression is split into three camps “Combat” “Trade” and “Exploration” of which you can “Progress” the ranks independently. There are also a number of “Super Power” groups such as the Federation, the Empire and the Alliance and countless of smaller groups, organisations, corporations and so on, each with their own missions and such.
The only loading screen I see for the whole game is the one when you go into a game, other than that there aren’t any visible loading screens. We are in the 21st 34th Century - It’s about damn time.
There is currently a serious problem that needs addressing with the Private Group feature in that if the group is split on different servers you can absolutely forget about trying to talk with them, massage them and even see/meet up with them in game. Both/All sides must restart the game just to have a chance of connecting to the same server. This is majorly off putting and at times frustrating, especially when the game decides to move you to a different instance to your friend(s) in mid-game.
What I personally would like to see is spatial anomalies and “Weirdness” that could be backed by science, like newly formed systems, T Tauri type stars in which cloud matter surrounds them, alien races or particle fountains! I understand we’re going for realism here but then… When I checked HDE 226868 it didn’t even have a black hole in the system, let alone a star having it’s mass being “consumed” by one. As for HR 7012 I see no planetary collision, in a game that prides itself on realism with stuff we (As humans) know, this was majorly disappointing and sorely underwhelming, at this point I’m hazarding a guess that Fomalhaut doesn’t have the dust cloud, but I haven’t been there, yet. There are more bones to pick with Blackholes in the game such as time dilation and/or spaghettification, but seeing as I haven’t seen one since Beta/Gamma I have no idea if they’ve improved or not (I haven’t been to HDE 226868 since Gamma either). 'Don’t fuck me around on this, Elite' I'd protest. Other than actually going to them and seeing them myself - I know my stars and shit but basically what I am saying here is this mechanic (Exploring) could do with some work.
Some have asked “Why aren’t there Quasars?” Because there isn’t actually any in our Galaxy (that we know of), so this is accurate. Although fun fact; some scientists believe that we might have one that "comes back to life" when Andromeda and the Milkyway merge in several billion years time.
You can make a fair bit of money off Exploring, but I really didn’t bother until I got an Advanced Scanner. You can sell the exploration data to any (as far as I know) starport for some cash, as long as the explored system is 20LY or more away- fair enough… However I found there was little to no point in it unless you got yourself an Advanced Discovery Scanner, not that I am complaining about this. I think it’s great that there are extra tiers to the Discovery Scanner. Trust me you’ll want one, if your aim is to explore.
Combat is amazing, for me I find that the blue bar on the speedometer is the “Sweet Spot” that allows me to turn faster, and I highly recommend investing in a Kill Warrant Scanner if you’re a bounty hunter, you will not be disappointed. Unfortunately… As you can see in the video this is far from perfect. For example if a Federal Security Service ship nicks you (hits you accidently in combat) there’s no apologies, they’re not wanted, nor do they face repercussions. You hit anything but a target that isn’t “WANTED” and you’re in for it. 200cr fine, which seems reasonable-ish, but the problem is every fucking “Cop” will be after your blood. Yes I suspect my aim might not be good, but come on - when a ship comes up from under you quickly OBVIOUSLY seeing you’re firing then they should expect to get hit… Seems a bit “Entrapment(y)” and "Overkill" to me.
Protip: Resource Extraction Sites are the best place to “Farm” easy kills. If you’re into Piracy you might want to consider this too. I know I am. I highly recommend doing the “Combat Training Demo” before doing any combat. It should also be noted that Resource Extraction Sites are significantly more demanding on the GPU for obvious reasons.
Trade back in Beta used to be pretty awesome, especially with Slopey’s Trade Calculator tool which Frontier Developments seem to not like the use of (as it scraped market data from their servers) as a result we have to use manually updated data. This is fine with me as far as I am concerned - to a degree. You see in Elite: Dangerous there is a number of systems that I’m going to call “Open” about their trade information and such (Systems you don’t have to spend in game Credits in order to obtain the information), these systems should be allowed to be scraped for these calculators… At the very least I’d expect useful information when I buy trade data, as it currently stands it’s useless. Trade as far as I am concerned right now is pretty broken, although I did make 8/9 million off of buying Palladium at Worlidge Terminal at LHS 3447 then selling it at Cleve Hub in Eravate. Its several trips mind, and the way back to Worlidge is pretty time consuming but worth it if you have a Cobra MkIII, with lots of cargo space or a Lakon Type 6, or bigger ship with lots of cargo space. (Free tip there)
There was some controversy a month before release when Frontier Developments announced that there wasn’t going to be an offline mode, this is probably due to the fact that the game is dynamic, and action affect the Galaxy (or portions of) now the gameplay itself is endless server costs and maintenance isn’t and there is a bit of uncertainty as to what will happen. What compacts this problem is the features that will be implemented over time in Expansion Packs which is even more concerning - because I’m sensing “£40 for Expansion Pack”. Some of these features I was under the impression would be included, but eh it is what it is. What it does have going for it is that the Developers are also players of the game, and it’s something they very clearly have a lot of pride in as it can be seen in the next video, it’d definitely seem that there is much for them to do as there is for us (the players to do) and to see this kind of enthusiasm from a dev team on a game… Is heart warming.
Features we can expect to be included in these “Expansion Packs” are apparently:
Landing / driving / prospecting on airless rocky planets, moons & asteroids
Walking around interiors and combative boarding of other ships
Combat and other interactions with other players and AIs in the internal areas of star ports
Accessing richly detailed planetary surfaces (and even cities)
Availability of giant ‘executive control’ ships to players
Now I’m already sensing that there is going to be at least one comment saying “Star Citizen is better!” And quite frankly I don’t care, lets set something clear. We haven’t had a decent space simulator to this magnitude and quality in a very long time, certainly not with this generation of computers. But really they have a lot of differences and it’s like comparing Golden Apples, to Golden Oranges; they’re both Golden and Fruit, as well as not very edible (I’d imagine) but that’s it - they’re different. That said if the rumours of StarCitzen’s Pay2Win are overblown or false I might pick up that game too, and review it… Unfortunately; despite its flaws, Elite: Dangerous has me, well and truly hooked. Elite: Dangerous feels like and is pretty much a Work in Progress, but it’s a damn fine Work in Progress and I look forward to the new features and future updates.
I do fear for some aspects of this game’s future, I was a late backer due to money constraints (I couldn’t afford 2x Alpha copies, otherwise I’d of gotten ten) and there is a lot of work that needs to be done in some areas. However this game is fucking awesome, graphically, sounds, immersion, music, it’s hit after hit and in these areas it does feel very well polished. I do like the fact that this game is dynamic, none of those scripted cheap ass endings we saw in Mass Effect 3 and I think I will be playing it for years to come.
The problems with this game are small or are outweighed by positives. I feel most of the things wrong with this game can be fixed, and probably will be fixed at some point. It certainly did better on launch than X-Refail even if comparing those to games is like comparing a Golden Apple to a Kick in the Bollocks.
Ability to play Solo or Private Group instead of jumping into public.
Music and Sounds.
Somewhat future proofed with 4k, 8k and 16k graphics and textures.
Truly Dynamic Economy.
A truly dynamic galaxy, shaped by the Players actions.
Exceptional attention to detail.
400-billion fucking star systems!
Extremely promising future.
Dedicated and passionate staff behind it.
Bugs with the Private Groups is infuriating.
Systems that we know of, aren’t accurately portrayed.
VoIP is dodgy, at best.
VR/Oculus Compatible (I don’t have one ~envy~)
Authorities over-react to NPC’s Pilot error.
Trade Data is useless.
It’s online only (this is a deal breaker for some).
Well worth your money? If you like this genre of games then hell yes it is.
Please note that this article was originally posted up on January 23rd 2015; we have since redone our articles system and moved the review - which has given it a new "Published Date". Apologies for the inconvenience.
If you don't want to read any back story - please skip to the big text saying "My Review".
[I'm not a professional reviewer just decided to make a post in here. Might make it a regular occurrence... Who knows.]
As many of you already know, I’m the Site Administrator for EcchiDreams, but in my spare time (what little of it) I play a lot of video games. I’m a PC gamer myself (Preferably with a 360 Controller. The best controller, in my opinion, in existence – Today anyway), I used to play on the Xbox 360, and I grew up playing games on the Basic Amstrad CPC464 (First ever PC, 1994), Amiga A600 (1995) and eventually a Windows PC (1996+).
One of the first space games I ever played was in 1998, (Just 8 years old) and I had to code a DOS program to be ran at the startup of my PC (because I had Windows 98, not good for running old DOS games). So basically I edited the autoexec.bat file in my C: drive (I believe) and injected my own script to run making the machine a multi-boot with MS-DOS with HighMem, and Windows 98 for my other games. It was a lot of fuss but it was what I went through to start playing Frontier Elite 2 (David Braben), and boy once I got it. I didn’t stop playing it. Then in 1999, I had to severely upgrade my computer just to run X-Beyond the Frontier (Egosoft), as even the though my machine matched the recommended requirements it still wasn’t enough, but it was so worth it when I finally got the components and was able to start playing it (And believe me I played for a long time).
(Thanks Dad! Whenever he upgraded his PC, I got the hand-me-downs. Useful because I ended up building lots of computers and start experimenting!)
I truly believe at the time that it was the most realistic thing I had ever experienced in a game! To some degree I believe to this day that it was ahead of its time and it is! It still looks somewhat good even today especially when compared to Frontier Elite 2, my only point of reference.
Frontier Elite 2: 1993 – David Braben
X-Beyond the Frontier: 1999 – Egosoft
I really felt my nine year old mind being fully immersed in what was going on, a part of the story line and Ban Dana of the Argon One was my brother and leader into the battle against the Xenon. I had to spend hours and hours of my childhood gaining the trust of the Peaceful Kingdom of Boron’s assistance in the fight, The Paranoid Forces of the Paranid, the Warrior Clans of the Split, Even the Greedy Scales of the Teladi to unite all species to work together to achieve a common goal. To stop the Xenon. (Only it hasn’t really stopped them at all.) But it’s uniting the known universe for the greater good that was the main focus point and I believe that was well achieved. Of course then there was the building of the Factories to get a constant stream of Credits for weapons. It made it challenging, worth it. I replayed that again when X-Tension came out unfortunately there was no sight of it in UK shops, I couldn’t get a copy. Even when getting it off eBay it turned out to be a copy boy was I ever pissed. Nowerdays I have it on Steam, cost me fuck all (Humble Bundle) and yet when I see how easy it is to get a copy now compared to back then (two years I spent trying to get it!)… Oh the memories.
I know at the time back then there was a massive hoo-har about it being “Unremarkable” as it had no plot. No story line. But I see and understand what Egosoft were trying to get at with this “Extension”. It was just a no-bullshit addon for X-Beyond the Frontier that added a TON of new things. I’ve never actually played it at length though… Never got round to it because in 2003 Egosoft released another game. X-Tension is slightly more improved in graphics to X-Beyond the Frontier.
X-Tension: 2000 – Egosoft
X2: The Threat 2003 - Egosoft
X2: The Threat, I pre-ordered without question. Damn it I wasn’t going to miss another game, by this point I never played X-Tension at all so I was pretty psyched to get it a day before it was actually due to be released (Thank you Amazon for Premature Ejaculations of Games.) I got an upgrade and remembered what I learnt from X-BtF (X-Beyond the Frontier), go above the recommended specs! Despite all this the game just never ran I didn’t get it to run until after I moved home, and was in school (So about May 2003). After getting a hold of updates (Which I had to download at school due to not being in a broadband area) and patches from Egosoft (which I had to download at a friend’s house because Egosoft.com was blocked at school, well until I hacked the shit out of that… But we will leave out how a secondary school student in the UK was able to access porn at school shall we?) I was able to update my machine and play it. In my naïve mind I didn’t see that this was a sign of things to come, now Egosoft are renown for releasing shit, fixing and ending spectacularly which is hardly ever disastrous. </sarcasm>
Needless to say there was a fuckton more to explore, and I had great fun. Sticking into it pretty good and spending more time on my PC than out there “Socialising” to be honest I still prefer it today honestly. The fact that I can do both now is something I’m still… Getting used to.
I spent a lot of time starting up my space empire, I found unknown sectors, (Boldy gone where no one’s gone before!) and decided to set up shop there, (Until I discovered some drained shields or ate hull) so once reloading a save I set up shop again in a good Unknown Sector and started my empire eventually having enough credits to expand until I had a space station in nearly every sector, and fleets in nearly every sector. I was quite proud of myself, honestly.
Then 2005 I decided to give Egosoft another chance, X3: The Reunion which I preordered. This time I got it a day late, by this point I had already started reading the reviews coming in for the game. I remember the negative ones still and the fans who were defending it. This is why I stear clear from that whole area and think upon what I THINK of the game not what a group says I should think. That said it installed properly and I could play it… For a little while. It was bugged to fuck.
I had to wait for a few months for Egosoft to make patches which I downloaded and tried out. Luckily; those patches were effective and I got used to a whole new interface, and I didn’t like the no cockpit thing at all at first, but I don’t know it’s grown on me. The fucking graphics though! ~low whistle~ DAMN. Then 2008 the BEST game ever to come out from Egosoft with Graphics that’d make anyone just want to pick up a spliff and relax at.
X3: The Reunion: 2005 – Egosoft
X3: Terran Conflict: 2008 – Egosoft
I don’t recall getting any problems with X3: Terran Conflict; it installed perfectly, ran perfectly and I had a pretty beefy PC that was capable of running it perfectly, and I got into it hard. Even when I moved to my Acer Aspire 8930G in 2010/2011 I was using it play this game. This was meant to so much to me that I literally included it as a major part of my EPSI Federation piece in the Andromeda RP. It was the “Framework” I used to build and shape their history and included actual game play in with the RP. Just keep that in mind, because the in a bit there is a head turner. I mean the Graphics... Wow.
I’ve spent a good few hours in Albion Prelude (Although have not really being taking part in story line) but that’s just an addon in my opinion to X3: Terran Conflict. This was all before I used Steam (Started 2012).
TRADE. FIGHT. BUILD. THINK.
They actually meaned something to me. The whole point of these X Games, all in space. Now that’s a game.
Imagine my surprise when I saw this trailer for X-Rebirth:
Please watch with sound/subtitles. At the time of writing this there were no annotations or links throughout the video.
I was so excited that it went straight to number 1 on my wish list and a friend of mine was very generous in getting it for me as a pre-order. I was (and still am despite the nasty experience with the game) very grateful to them, but this person is a private person and wishes to remain anonymous so I can’t thank them publicly but I have thanked them several times personally). There’s only two things I looked forward to this year; X-Rebirth and Doctor Who.
WOW! THEY TOPPED X3: TERRAN CONFLICT?!
No. They didn't even top Frontier Elite 2 in my opinion.
Now for my review...
I think X-Refail is an appropriate title to this review. There have been some on Meta Critic that have called it X-Stillbirth, I’d never be so offensive in publicly calling it that, but it’s fairly accurate as well as offensive, unfortunately. So well played in my opinion. Oh and yes I truly feel awful for thinking that.
Yes! X-Rebirth was an unmitigated disaster, despite Egosoft calling it a success. Yes it reached number 1 in sales on Steam, but I wonder how many of them will be calling for a refund? Oh wait…
I know I shouldn’t have expected X4 and I wasn’t but for fuck sakes… What the fuck is this?! THIS TOOK SEVEN YEARS?! Holy shit, sounds like you need The Doctor more than I do! There are so many bugs in the game that people haven’t even been able to play it yet. I have but only to a point; you see there are several large game breaking bugs in it. They’re so bad I think all of current progress is useless (I’ve been compensating by running around picking up loot and selling it oh then I cheated. I decided to start editing my save game to try and undo some of the damage that’s been done. Then I came to realisation as I came away from the story line. This game has worse problems than the fucking awful bugs and these can’t be fixed with a quick and simple patch. Something went fundamentally wrong in the creation of this game, and how no one spotted the bugs is beyond my current understanding at the moment. I blame either subjective blindness or stupidity to be perfectly honest. It doesn’t even feel complete and a lot of core features (ones that made the game so good were stripped!) It feels like a dumbed down version of an X-Game but like before X-Beyond the Frontier or something. Then logical explanations found by fans shed some light on it. The theory goes; The Game was designed for Consoles then for some reason Egosoft decided to scrap that and port it to PC. Which doesn’t make sense seeing as all their games have been PC based (then Linux/Mac I believe) not console basically. You can’t replicate that kind of complex system on a console and to be honest I’d never play a console version of an X game. PC vs XBOX vs PS bullshit aside, I PREFER to being able to upgrade parts in my PC than to buy a new console which (No offence) doesn’t even compare to my PC.
The trailer made some pretty start demands. I felt betrayed when I realised about this (Thank you Steam User: Mr $team [http://steamcommunity.com/id/cerealkilla007/images/?appid=2870] for helping me remember this). Egosoft outright lied (some say) worse than Electronic Arts and even more so blatantly.
"…your actions truly matter when every ship and every space station is a part of a fully simulated universe…" Be honest, really most of these ships are just cannon fodder and it doesn't make a blind bit of difference (Perhaps only in reputation with factions) if I start fly swatting, really. It’s even more noticeable when these ships are coming out of these ridiculous highways.
Also... "manage your empire with help from people you hire aboard gigantic space cities" What Gigantic Space Cities? Where were these? I recall some docks on a space station, but not actual cities. I wasn't expecting the Citadel from Mass Effect (Another EA reference) but geez. Frontier Elite 2 had a more functional (and variant) space dock, at least it had a BBS. This FELT like a joke.
In every X-Game since X-Tension you’ve been able to pilot more than one ship, let’s face in even Frontier Elite 2 got that dynamic right. It makes a game feel more customisable if you can pick your own ship and what parts go into it. If I want an Argon Titan (Lord knows why) all loaded with shockwave generators then fuck. Then that’s what I’m going to make and pilot! We got to customise the ship based on our abilities and what we were good and not good at it’s what made it fun and exciting.
This… FEELS like a console game. There’s no denying it. This guy sums up much of my review and quite honestly I share in his frustration.
If I ever meet this man, I’d buy him a pint.
The campaign (Story mode) is fucked to buggery to be blunt, and the lack of space stations (Nothing stopping from having small stations too was there?!) was insulting. I never completed the game, I got snagged on a Gamebreaker, that’s the bad type of bug that usually comes with a shit storm of angry computer smashin’ fun. [No didn’t allow it to get me that far. Close though </joke>] SETA has been ditched (Yay!) and replaced with some weird Freelancer feeling type shit. Ugh. It felt like a rewind back to the last decade or so; and that’s bad because a decade or so ago they were beyond their time and each time they did this over and over again, and this game has only set the bar backwards. Hell a re-release of X3: Terran Conflict with elements of this game would have been a much better implementation of all this.
Egosoft have been rather good at recovering from disastrous releases, they’re able to patch bugs quickly and show some of that fine German Efficiency at doing it. But this is different, I feel if all the bugs were fixed the game would still be extremely incomplete, from start to finish I have been very disappointed and disgusted about being lied to and offended that they see this as a success. I made this point on their Facebook, Steam and Site and I’ve ran into Fan’s that question my Fandom of the series as a hole. I’d say I was an Egosoft Fan but I’m not a part of the Fandom if that makes sense at all. I probably sound like a rambling hipster now. >_<
Bringing up what I said earlier, I incorporated their games into a creation of mine to help build it up. I don’t expect anything from it, of course; but I’d say that makes me qualified to be a fan, personally. Being a fan doesn’t mean I will take part in the silly debate going on, on Steam. It also doesn’t mean I will push my beliefs in other faces. Instead I decided to make a thread on my own site, and if people want to read it then fair play to them. Likewise if not; then whatever. No hard feelings.
This is why I hate fan groups. I don’t see myself as better than them by all means but I just don’t see the point in arguing about it. It’s all perspective. This is my perspective.
Summary: X Rebirth is just a pile of wank, except that at least leaves a nasty mess for someone to clean up this game is sadly a bit Beyond that Frontier. Egosoft admitted [http://www.incgamers.com/2013/11/egosoft-apologise-for-the-state-of-x-rebirth] that there were nasty bugs in the game and are already working hard in patching it. But as people have stated quite clearly already patches can only do so much; nothing can quite fix the mess that was released on the 15th November 2013. Egosoft in my opinion have to answer for a lot of questions from their loyal (and crazy*) fans. What went wrong? What happened? Why were we lied to? Why did we get rid of what fucking worked and expanded on in X3: Terran Conflict? Who passed off this game? The list goes on… Then I found out that there’s only a very limited amount of sectors overall. Wow… Fuck-this-game.
I suppose the DLC for X Rebirth will be 2 more sectors for £14.99, or 4 more sectors for £24.99. <- At the time of this post, it was intended as a joke.
Some people have said that this will probably be the end of Egosoft, and there’s no doubting they’ve lost a lot loyal fans trust over this, myself included. Some are fine with it, and in my opinion, that’s good for you. But I’m not fine with it. Nothing’s stopping you from putting up a positive review.
Oh and I discovered I have a twitchy finger with this game. I use the keyboard and mouse, because in other games the X-Box controller doesn’t work with it and honestly… I accept that. This game does work with the controller found out today. Apparently easier to use too. Fuck. Anyway every so often I’d just left click to make small adjustments to movement when all of a sudden, twitch, I’ve opened fire on a space station.
The storyline likes substance too. PMC and Albion whatevers are supposed to be hatin’ each other? Why aren’t they fighting? Why are they living side by side each other and shit? Why am I the one singled out and attacked by PMC? Come to think of it when a PMC dickwad starts shooting at me, none of my Albion friends come to my aid? In the previous X-Games I could at least hail a station and ask for assistance, in this game I fucking get told off and punished by Albion when I return fire on a PMC ship? But if these sides hate each other wh-? You see, that’s console logic. That’s why I play PC games. This game has poor graphics considering the standards Egosoft keep raising, even worse voice acting than ever, shittier music and no value in terms of game play. I can't write this review and remain unbaised as best I can with how cynical I am. There's nothing nice to say and the only things that there are is force feeded my cynicism. So I guess I failed here just like Egosoft failed with this piece of garbage.
And Update: Unconfirmed reports of 360 code has been screenshotted from a shaders folder installed with X Rebirth; this is significant because it shows why the chose to stick with DirectX 9. Some have said it was like they made it for the 360 found it wouldn't work and booted it out the door for the PC instead, which is really shameful behaviour in my opinion and if this is true I think we're rightfully owed an explanation. If this was the case the best moral thing Egosoft could do is stand up and admit they screwed us, answer our questions and learn from their feedback. Sales have also fallen sharply on Steam but then again there is apparently an AAA title up there at -40% off. Perhaps someone somewhere is burying this game back into a blackhole where it belongs, in my opinion. Can Egosoft fix it? Well they think they can fix the bugs at least. I still think it's a little beyond that personally. If it does get better and my opinion changes and perhaps I can put something nice in, then I'll come back to this with an addition review (This will remain here) until then lets see if David Braben's Elite IV: Dangerous can make a stunning return as well as RSI's Star Citizen (I should bloody well say so with over $27 Million funding it. Can't wait to review that. But I don't think I'll preorder anymore, and I'll hope my outstanding pre-orders pay off.
*Crazy and its meaning are meant as a perception orientated observation. >_>
Please note that this article was originally posted up on November 17th 2013; we have since redone our articles system and moved the review - which has given it a new "Published Date". Apologies for the inconvenience.
[I'm not a professional reviewer just decided to make a post in here. Might make it a regular occurrence... I do have plenty of Hentai, who knows? I don't expect everyone to agree with my views or opinions, and if yours differs please feel free to reply/leave a comment. But lets keep this rational.]
I watched this the only way I could and would ever watch a Hentai; English Subbed (Because the only other language I remotely know is Russian even then... It's pretty much "Hello" and "Can I use the toilet?") and Japanese Dubbed (Because English Dubbing sends to sound shallow, flat, uninspiring and worst of all- Juvenile. In my opinion).
Kuro Ai: Hitoyozumakan Inkou Rannyuuroku A.K.A Dark Love is a very strange Hentai indeed; it starts off with a tentacle rape/tentacle fucking that should give the viewer some indication of what's to come, yet in Episode 1 this is the last time we see a good ol' fashioned Tentacle Scene. I watch this the only way I could and would ever watch a Hentai; English Subbed (Because the only other language I remotely know is Russian even then... It's pretty much "Hello" and "Can I use the toilet?") and Japanese Dubbed (Because English Dubbing sends to sound shallow, flat, uninspiring and worst of all- Juvenile. In my opinion).
The Sex Scenes are on Crack and the Characters are quite possibly on Cocaine and Speed. Welcome to Dark Love.
When I first saw this in 2010; it was immediately hailed as my favourite Hentai of all time, so it's interesting now in 2013 (nearly 2014) that I'd review it again nearly four months on and almost 9 years after episode one was released. Since 2005 the world of Hentai has changed, perhaps forever. So a lot has happened since this was released and I definitely don't think it'd be released today. To say it's "Absolutely Not For Children" would be perhaps the biggest understatement ever; some adults can't even cope with the stuff that goes on in this Hentai. But I'm a little older now, and I believe I can analyse it at least somewhat objectively with hardly any bias. Fingers crossed.
The plot according to ANN states "Tetsuya's investigation into a luxurious hotel turns over a nest of yakuza and a bizarre orgy cult. On rich silk sheets and velvet chairs, the rich and powerful participate in sex acts so depraved that just witnessing them is likely to turn a man into a monster. But the true purpose of this cult is a pact with evil energies that can literally turn Tetsuya into an inhuman demon." Well I'm glad someone has an idea what's going on; I've watched this Hentai about six times already and each time I learn more, I pick more up from it in terms of trying to follow the plot. Perhaps its because I have to read it all (Which no doubt things probably got lost in translation in) but that's not the only thing, as I said earlier the characters seem to be on some kind of speed enhancing narcotic, blink and you probably missed a key part of the story, and if that wasn't bad enough it seems the sex scenes are placed in just the correct format to completely distract you from the Story Line.
Did anyone else find it a little bit strange that Tetsuya Gojou's work can be helped by standing outside of a school for (what I assume is for) girls? Come on... I'm the first to say there are ligitmate reasons why grown men might be around a school (Teacher, Parent, etc) but even in context that's strange.
Now usually this isn't such a bad thing, distraction with some kinky pleasure, and on that regard it works. But the problem is, that's not the only thing that's distracting. The Sex Scenes contain a lot of flashing, and quite frankly high quality GIF like pictures on a 1ms transitional or something (Hence the Crack comment.) Now whilst I see what the producers were trying to do with this, I feel that it was just simply too fast with lacking frames, it was like watching a computer game lag. Then there's the fucking dialogue during the sex scenes, I find it hard to take any of them seriously anymore, even taken out of context it's annoyingly, humorously distracting at best and not in the good way.
On the topic of distractions during the sex if the above wasn't enough, something rather strange happened in the first sex scene. Without giving too many spoilers away (if you haven't watched it already) Miyabi came into the bedroom of Tetsuya Gojou, a phone tucked half in her thigh high as she crawled her way up Tetsuya Gojou's bed. The Phone was connected to a phone call with Ayaka Utsumi (From what I can tell; she's Tetsuya Gojou's girlfriend.) Where she could hear her lover climaxing because Miyabi was giving him a weird blowjob/titjob. Obvious Ayaka Utsumi heard this and was deeply upset that her beloved would cheat on her. So far, so good. Then the music changed, and things started getting weird. They were being watched by Hazuki Sogawa who at this point is masturbating furiously, I think pretending that that Tetsuya Gojou was doing this to her, but then strangely so was his now Ex-Girlfriend (She dumped him apparently). The sex scene jumped back and forward from this rape scene to these two women jiffing themselves off. That was confusing and I'm not entirely certain that upon hearing that news and reacting like that the first thing anyone would do is furiously masturbate over the cheating partner fucking them like this. So yeah that was a little confusing to be honest.
Apparently duc, his well-being doesn't seem to be his biggest priority at the moment.
The more I tried analysing this Hentai the more I got quite cynical about it and I didn't really know what it was. As I said previously the more times I watched it the more it appeared to change my perspective into what exactly I just watched. I love that they crammed so many fetishes into one bag but the scene were we had wiggly worms being inserted up the anus of Hazuki Sogawa... Personally not thing, and I personally don't know who on Earth would find that sexually pleasing. (But apparently it's a real thing, so I withhold my judgement on it, each to their own.)
There is a plot to this porn, but the problem with it is it's both brilliant and hard to follow mainly because of the distractions. If the plot was easier to follow, and less distractions through the whole 'Adult Cartoon' then perhaps it would have made it perfect. I also get we're trying to train 'dirty sluts' here, but I don't quite understand why a "Slut" should have to look up at the man they're blowing off. Really; from my perspective I find it awkward (That could just be me though) if anyone did it. Slut or not. But throughout the series one's not sure if they're berating or complimenting "Sluts" further adding to the confusion.
I feel Dark Love somewhat shares what I personally believe in. Although they probably push the boundaries for me a little bit further than that. It's not often in a Hentai you see a Pregnant Woman simultaneously giving a bunch of men some sexual service, but it was nice to see. Everything about it was tolerable, and even enjoyable (Save the faults listed above) then at the end she was pissed on by all of them. Well there's another boner killer right there.
I have to keep in mind that some people out there do love having a Golden Shower (Again not my thing, I do RP it though.) AND it's with (As far as we're aware) consenting adults. (Okay it's a Hentai, it's fictional. That's not what I meant.)
Episode two; starts off with Rikka Koujin blowing off Tetsuya, somewhat explaining a mission involving the Magic Potion, which was somewhat touched on in the first Episode. We can deduce that this potion fuels some kind of change to tentacle monster from Human in this Episode. I think these are filled with what ever woman he's "Courrupted"'s collection of male jizz. (I've heard that before...) This potion keeps people youthful, slutty and irresistible to- I've watched this six times and honestly I have no fucking idea what's going on. It explains a few things leaves a lot open for interpretation, moving on...
After the titles we're pretty much introduced to Honoka Houjou's sister, Kaori Mizuno, she's a married woman. Except we don't know that bit yet, she's in debt possibly because her business isn't doing so well and she has to pay the money back to what I would assume is either Yukuza or some kind of Non-Tentacle-Monster-Owning-Loan-Shark, there's a shocker. Honoka Houjou brings Hazuki Sogawa and Tetsuya Gojou in with her, at this point Honoka and Kaori are revealed to be sisters and Hazuki and Tetsuya are "Customers" After some whoopsie-daisy I dropped the drink and broke something we enter the closure of the scene after a quick comedy sibling-teasing bit. We seem to jump forward in time, and we come back to the Cafe/Shop thing only to find that now she has to pay by noon not days she was promised before. Tetsuya conveniently makes a re-appearance after the phone call, from what we can assume this is out of the blue. He apparently wants to help her, there's a short cut and he's sitting down, ordering a warm drink. Apparently big breasts means Titty Milk, whilst I won't pick on a hentai for this kind of logic, I will say that her not questioning this did ring as little odd, but perhaps she's desperate.
Kaori returns with the milk in a sippy cup, I dread to think how much that'll set him back. When she brings it over to him we have another typical "Whoopsie-daisy" moment in which her breast milk spills all over his groin.
That's some fascinating stuff. I know some people will say this Hentai is derogatory to women. I'd be happy with that statement, if on the same logic, when applying a faulty premise on a fictional cartoon that it's also derogatory to men too. I don't think I've heard Sperm and Semen reduced to dirty "Cock Juice" and said more times in any Hentai in my life. Seriously it could be turned into a drinking game. If you're one of those people (and whatever -- its your life) that finds and complains about these types of problems then perhaps Dark Love isn't for you. In fact most Hentai probably isn't either.
It seems his luck didn't get the shit end of the stick as well, as within seconds she agreed to clean him all up with her mouth. How nice... Then he got a boner and you know where that's going next. Infact the first time I saw this episode I distinctly remember when I first heard about the Coffee shop saying "HURR! You know where that's going!" Well unsurprisingly it went there, and then some.
After the blowjob we're left with Tetsuya telling her how she was going to pay back her debt, assumingly it involved selling them off. We also get a nice squiggly line away from her mouth from what I assume is a pube. I know I wanted realism but really?
As I went through the plot, I felt it was rushed when she just started handing out sexual favours so willingly, but then I don't consider myself part of the society that's around me... So I have no idea if a married woman would do this so quickly, I doubt it. Then within ten minutes she sold herself and her sister off to pay her debts. Then less than ten minutes after all this started there was a free for all, fuck and cum inside party between her and her sister with a room full of men (apparently). To which they were berated and fucked and then pissed all over again. (This time they made the mentioning of drinking it all down. What ever rocks your boat?) The sex scenes were hilarious in dialogue, animation, and content. I'm also pretty sure that this DVD should contain an Epilepsy Warning, because it just wasn't fun. As fictional (IE. Not real, as in they're not real people) storylines go, it'd probably be alot better if the dialogue was cleaned up, if I could edit Subs in the video I'd probably do it just so I could stop complaining about it. But if the scenes weren't so distracting. There's also a lot of "I'm going to Climax"... I mean repeatedly. I thought this may have been Translation issues but later it was "I'm coming" which to be honest reads better.
I feel if I were wanking off to this, I'd end up like this guy...
I feel this Hentai is supposed to be a boundary pusher, and that's pretty much mission accomplished. In terms of Fetishes, I feel it hits a niche market, so I have to say that's quite daring. We have Pregnancy, Impregnation, Cheating, Bondage, Golden Showers, Inserting Wiggly-Worms up the butt, Tentacle, Dominance, A little Girl on Girl and a dash of romance (I suppose, in the second episode) and it mixes them quite well. It's pretty good at combining these to make a sex scene. Not all of them appealed to me but then it wasn't made just for me. All of this I felt was let down by the extremely low-quality rapid GIF like animations for the sex scenes, the plot was hard to follow and after watching a total of six times in my life, I still have no fucking clue what's REALLY going on. It didn't help that the distractions, distracted from it. Yet you'd be hard pressed to find the fetishes the series covered so it's a tough call. I do feel there maybe capacity for a third and last episode if anything it could tie up a few things and end the story completely but perhaps leaving it on a cliff hanger was intentional. Either way this Hentai IS inspiring particularly if you're Roleplaying something similar. It definitely could have been an actual season (say containing four to six episodes) if the time was taken to properly explain the plot and to spread it out across. That's the main problem with this Hentai; it's on crack; it's just cramming everything into two 30 minute videos and I feel that is ultimately Dark Love's downfall. Perhaps with it spread like that they wouldn't have needed to make the sex scenes look rushed (not just fast but rushed too). Considering this was my favourate hentai I don't say that lightly.
There are a lot of good elements in there, but then a lot of it is ruined by the faults and ultimately; this Unique Hentai could have done really well. But it's a shame. The dialogue is cheesy and lame although the story telling is pretty good, if you can keep up. Overall not the worst hentai I've ever watched... It's awkward, jutty and just simply... It's not the best hentai I've ever seen. But it's still my favourate for now, which proves you don't have to be perfect to be liked.
I don't mean to sound big headed and righteous, hell I don't think I could do better personally. It's worth watching if you're into a lot of things it does and if you Roleplay and need ideas it's perhaps perfect if you're looking for that sort of thing.
Of course I probably have better and worst ones with this kind of collection:
Please note that this article was originally posted up on November 24th 2013; we have since redone our articles system and moved the review - which has given it a new "Published Date". Apologies for the inconvenience.