Monday, June 25, 2012

Mike's Mondays with Mike McGee: I Wanna Be The Very Best

       Why is it that there is always a shipping delay on my pre-ordered games from Amazon? It’s frustrating, but not enough to break through my frustration threshold, which would force me to interact with an actual person when making my purchases. Nope, for now, I’ll keep grinning and bearing. What game was I shafted out of 2-3 business days of playtime? Why, Pokémon Conquest, of course! I didn’t play much else for the week, other than Kid Icarus: Uprising. But I’m not gonna talk about that here because I talked about it here. However, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to write a full review about this game or not. I happen to like what this game’s got cooking.  Regardless of what I say in this post, I may still write one. But I’ll probably be too lazy to do so. I happen to have a very packed summer, you know. I’ll give you my two cents after you, too, scent what this game is cookin’.

My vote's on the Jigglepuff
       This Pokémon installment is a little different than previous one’s because it happens to be a strategy game. Yeah, no, that didn’t help? Ok, picture Final Fantasy Tactics, but throw in some more pikachus (which I, surprisingly, haven’t seen a single one of after about 12 hours of gameplay) and you’re in the clear…or whatever. I’ve also heard it described as Dynasty Warrior meets Pokémon, but that might just be for the story. Speaking of which, you play as a warlord of a kingdom in the Ransei Region, which is home to about 0 new Pokémon. You’ve got this chick, Oichi talking to you about stuff when your kingdom gets invaded, I think. I don’t remember how the beginning goes, but basically there’s this legend that this super cool legendary Pokémon that created the Ransei Region show itself to the person that controls every kingdom in the region. There’s this evil dude that is trying to do that so that he can basically wreck everything. And you’re trying to stop him by…taking over all the kingdoms? So you’re not so much stopping him as you’re beating him to the punch. It’s around this time that you realize that you’re character only s’got one little buddy, an Eevee. But since you’re a warlord, master strategist, Oichi let’s you tell her how to move her Jigglepuff. 

Mmm, I'll see what I can do
       Let me explain some of the specifics of combat. The pokemon (assume that “é” is in this and all future uses of the word) only know one move, which is good because it doesn’t have PP attached to it but is also bad when the move it knows isn’t the type that you want it to be (like the first flying pokemon you get and need only knows quick attack…). There are also warrior powers that’ll buff you in some way. These can use once a battle per warrior you’re using. I guess the level (basically strength) of the pokemon is the “link” percentage between you and your pokemon. It goes up after every battle depending on how effective it did in the fight. You can link with wild pokemon during battle if one of your warriors is able to. Every warrior has a certain number of pokemon they can be linked with and it changes from warrior to warrior. You want to link with other pokemon because every warrior has a specific pokemon that they can 100% link with and it’s probably a big deal when that happens but I haven’t done that yet. 

Uh, friendship?
       But that link thing is a big deal. That’s how you evolve your pokemon and, in some case, how you evolve your warriors. Yeah, you read that right. PEOPLE EVOLVE IN THIS GAME. It really only the warlords that joined you from other kingdoms but it’s still awesome. This allows for faster movement of your pokemon, increases link capacity, can change the 100% pokemon to something better, and all that and all that. They get all that from, basically, just putting on fancier clothes. Awesome!
Mike evolved into Super Mike!
       If you beat another warrior’s pokemon with a super effective attack, he’ll ask to join your army. You can also gain more peeps by beating the pokemon in less than 4 turns and/or not taking any damage from that pokemon. Yeah, so you basically just go from place to place, capturing other kingdoms and getting people to join your army. I think it’s pretty fun. It’s different than the regular Pokémon formula, but it’s a creative twist on an old classic. The combat’s definitely a lot more strategic and you have to watch your unit placement on the overworld, lest you be invaded yourself. Hindsight says that this was a match made in Pokéheaven and should’ve been thought of earlier. The sad part about it though is that I know my good buddy, John, would like a game like this, but according to the back of the box, “Basic reading ability is needed to enjoy this game.” Sorry, man.

"STOP MOCKING ME!" -- John Mikula
This is already running kinda long, yet I still have so much to say. I get I have no choice. My two cents is that I have more to talk about. Whether or not I’m able to focus enough to write a full review is yet to be determined. I’ll try to play more games for next week.

Your pal,
Mike McGee 

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