Sunday, 18 May 2014

Vita TV - Should Vita Owners Be Worried?

PS Vita TV - Will all future releases be Vita TV compatible? 

Hi again! I have had a couple of followers on my last post through SoundCloud. (Thanks!) So because of that I thought I should come back on tonight and make another post on a subject that has been on my mind lately. 

I own the PS Vita and I love it. Especially the AMOLED (Which is why you don't want the slim!) which makes the games visuals amazing compared to my 3DS (Which I do also love because of its games.) But with the release of the Vita TV in Japan it has made me wonder about the future of some of the PS Vita's Features.

Time for some comparison!

For those of you that don't know, the PS Vita TV is a home console that you connect to your TV, that uses a DualShock 3 controller (Same as the PS3) and allows you to play Vita games, without the need for a Vita. It releases at a similar price to the Vita but slightly cheaper, outputs in HDMI(HD) and has 1GB internal memory which can be expanded with the use of a PS Vita memory card. So far so good! Because all of this is near enough the same as the Vita, but, now comes the tricky bit:

The Vita has the following features that the Vita TV does NOT:
  • Front Touchscreen
  • Rear Touchpad
  • Sixaxis Motion Sensing (As far as I can tell the Vita TV has this also because of the DualShock 3 )
  • Electronic Compass
  • Front Camera
  • Rear Camera

The lack of these features means that initially quite a few of the Vita games would need to be modified to be played on the Vita TV and games like Tearaway, that was a big Vita hit, would be near impossible to make the switch because of the amount of game features that rely on the extra functionality.

So The Vita TV Users Don't Get A Few Games. Where's The Problem?

Now a few of you may be thinking, "oh well, ill stick with the Vita it won't be a problem, I will still be able to play every game right?" Correct! BUT....
The Vita TV is becoming a huge success in Japan, and it has recently been released to parts of Asia, so far there is not a release date for Europe or North America but it has not been dismissed either. As the Vita and Vita TV are region free (PSN is not!) a lot of the game journalist websites have imported a Vita TV from Japan, and so far, almost every review has been in favour of it. Some even saying that the console is more of a step forward for Sony than the PS4.

The problem for us Ye Olde Vita owners is that with the Vita TV's rising popularity worldwide, but more importantly in its home country, Japan. Most of the future games will now be optimised for the Vita TV. We will still be able to play them on Vita of course. But if you are someone like me that brought the Vita for the games that have amazing AR abilities, or games that were going to make full use of the front and rear touch pads. I'm afraid that I do not think that they will be coming any time soon. 

For example, I am currently playing Conception II on my Vita. The game itself has 2 times that you need to use any of the extra Vita features, and both are the Touchscreen. 
  1. To Save (This is Vita side not game side so not even sure if this counts)
  2. "Touch" Minigame, which is a small section of the game (Less than 20 minutes all events?) and could easily be removed. And its slightly creepy anyway.
Conception II

Other Features?

The PS VITA TV also allows you to play PS3 Games (And soon PS4) in a separate room from the console onto another TV that is connected to the Vita TV, so for example you could have your PS4 hooked up running loud in your bedroom and play your PS4 games in the living room with the nice and quiet PS VITA TV connected to your bigger living room TV. There is no reports on streaming issues yet but I am sure we will find out the answer to that soon enough. 

Also for me the big feature that the VITA wins is the portability. Which is such a good feature for me when me and my partner are living separate and its such a pain to move around a PS3. But with the pricing strategy of the Vita TV and the streaming possibilities its sure to sell more than the normal Vita. Also there are rumours of the PS Vita TV could be sold at a reduced rate with new PS4's in some countries. Which will greatly help the sale of both consoles. 

TL;DR - Vita TV is going to kill the Vita's extra functionality. But at least I can still play the Vita on the bus.

Once again, thank you for reading.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Zelda A Link Between Worlds 3DS.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds - Life on the Dark Side

Hi! I recently treated myself to a 3DS and because I have had a long history with the Zelda games I decided to purchase the special edition 3DS with the Link Between Worlds Triforce on it, since it comes with the game preloaded I have not really rushed to play this game. But having just completed it I thought it would be good as my first proper Blog post!

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is set in the same world as the early 90's SNES version of Hyrule in Zelda: A Link to the Past. Having played the SNES game it does bring back fond memories of this Hyrule and it is made even better by adding an amazing soundtrack that is a variation of songs from some other Zelda titles. This may initialy trick you into thinking the game is just some 90's throwback where they are trying to squeeze more money out of a very prized cash cow. But you would be wrong. Although the Hyrule location in the game is very similar to the original there is a big variation in the new world called Lorule.

Lorule is accessed by going through the cracks like seen above using the interesting new game mode in A Link Between Worlds which is the ability to turn into a painting that allows you to walk on walls. This feature adds a new level of depth to the puzzle's in the game which are already nothing like the game this is based on. If anything this is more of a sequel to A Link to the Past then a remake.

Lorule is a world that has been plagued by darkness and it is up to you, Link, the hero of Hyrule to help the poor princess of Lorule and once again save Zelda!

The game also has another new feature which is basically a weapon shop, after only a few hours of game time you unlock this shop which has an inventory of almost all of the games available weapons. The shop makes you decide between paying a relatively low amount and renting the item, which upon death will return itself to the shop. Or paying a much larger amount of Rupees and buying the weapon outright.

This beast was a lot easier than you would think

This new addition to the Zeldaverse is a very good game at heart (many of hearts...) and can keep you entertained for quite a long time, and upon completion it is one of the only Zelda games to offer a newgame+ called Hero Mode.

Weapon Store
One of the problems for me was the implementation of the new weapon store, although this was a nice new feature that did come in handy. I decided to never rent an item and just purchase the item I knew that I needed for that particular dungeon, because it was basically 1 item needed per dungeon and by the time the dungeon was complete you had racked up enough Rupees to go and purchase the item needed for the next dungeon. The weapon shop also made the in-dungeon chests more dull as you knew that the big chests would only contain something to make Link stronger or make him be able to swim or lift rocks.

Easily the hardest bit in the game. 

Difficulty Spikes
Another problem for me was the times that the game became really difficult for 1 room in an otherwise easy dungeon. This did not happen to often but there were a few puzzles that required very tight ledge walking, these could sometimes be very difficult especially the few that made you jump down from a high ledge to a low ledge. Because of the angle of the camera it made these very difficult to land and used a lot of my health bar just to get past.

How much would you pay?
After playing this Zelda title I would have to say that this game should be purchased around the £25 mark. Although being a Zelda game, the game did not seem as long as other titles since the other games usually make you think that you are completed with you dungeons, then throw another 7 at you. This game made it a little to easy to see the end coming since it put a cross on the map at every destination.
But all being said. This game has amazing visuals, and age old style of gameplay loved by many, an excellent soundtrack. And hey... its Zelda!

Thanks for reading

Friday, 16 May 2014


Anime, Games, Technology and anything else that pique's my interest.

When I was a boy my life revolved around games. I grew up spending my weekend's not over the park or playing football (which I did try once, and failed miserably) but instead would be inside in my bedroom trying to complete Zelda: Ocarina of Time (took me 10 years.... with a walkthrough.... if i'm honest) and playing Snowboard Kids which are both on the N64. Around that time I also got the Game Boy Colour and Pokemon Blue (Blastoise FTW) and played it constantly including trying the imfamous Mew glitch a few times. Me and my friend with similar gaming tastes decided to get Phantasy Star Online for the GameCube. Although we both played it offline we both lost 300+ hours of our life's on that game.

Fast forward some years, I got into World Of Warcraft. I played mainly on a private server called WOWSCAPE (that later got shut down quite forcibly by Blizzard) where I joined a guild that had a few members that me and my friend got on very well with, after around a year of raiding with this group there was a split of power in the guild and it got disbanded literally overnight whilst I was offline. In an attempt to not loose contact with the key members of the guild I created another guild called BlessingOfChaos. So we started again under the new name and continued to raid together until the week it was shut down.

Because of the great times I had on WOW and the fact that I created the name, I decided to change my then used name Ace/Acefire to BlessingOfChaos on any game that I played after.

I was talking to a member of the guild one day and he said that he was going to a local book event that had some Japanese translated books called Manga. Having never heard of these before I was interested and because he was such a nice person he sent me a book from the show titled Chibi Vampire Vol.1. Not being a comic person I was sceptical at first but I soon loved the story and found myself buying the rest of the volumes plus a few more series such as Love Hina, Chobits and DearS.

Following on from this I discovered Anime, and with this discovery I realised that what I had been watching for years such as Pokemon, Dragonball Z and Digimion was not actually a cartoon but this other type of media called Anime. Because of my love for Chibi Vampire I have developed a fondness for romantic Anime that has a very strong progression of a romance through the series. After watching a few series that really hit the spot with my tastes I got addicted to Anime, and now I will watch at least one episode a night before bed and on a weekend I have been known to watch a whole series in one day.

During the 'Japan Culture Learning stage' I was still constantly devouring games, trying a ton of MMO's trying to replicate the feeling I had in WOWSCAPE, (never happened) playing PS2 , PS3, 360, 3DS, Vita ect. (With a focus on RPG's) And I also took up an interest in card games especially YuGiOh and MTG, where I attended local tournaments and played online. I also met my lovely partner Amelia that has stuck with me for nearly 6 years now that I think the world of. She has also started to play some games now, she only plays multiplayer and our main game is League of Legends although we have played GW, GW2 and other games together.

TL;DR  My Life - Games Anime Movies Cards Manga Girlfriend.

Thanks for Reading