Sunday, October 12, 2014

Pull the Calamity Trigger

This article has been sitting pretty for about... three months now. I've put off talking about it. However, this is still – for all intents and purposes – a "first impressions blog post". You know the drill, let's jump right into it.

After finally obtaining a PSP of my own, I've been playing a few demos to really get myself back into the gaming mood. My first official purchase, however, was BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger! I had heard a lot about this game, and one of the people I used to follow on tumblr talked so, so highly about this game. It was only $9.99 on the PSN, so I thought "Hey, why not try it out?"

In truth, my overall impression is still forming, but it's not as favourable as it started out to be. This doesn't mean that I hate the game or the characters,—no no no—I won't speak as highly of this game as others have.

The one thing that BlazBlue has is an overabundance over empty-minded characters, particularly in the way of their females. Most of them are air headed in different ways, but the similarities in personalities is too much of a glaring fault to ignore. Having that many childish and energetic characters is exhausting and unappealing. For example, Bang Shishigami, probably the best thing about him is his name, is one of the male characters who became overshadowed by his subordinates. Sometimes, he's really funny, but mostly, he's just an air headed, lovesick goof. His voice and personality are too obnoxious, which sometimes gets in the way of a promising character.

Fighting is an adventure of its own. The controls, when you can nail them, are incredibly responsive. High impact fighting games that rely on combos, much like BlazBlue does, is really hard to play on a portable console. Handles on a hard-surface console controller give you the stability you need and minimize discomfort. Trying to nail directional combos isn't impossible, but it does take definite practice—and it's absolutely uncomfortable all the while.

One of the positives is that there are characters that absolutely fit your fighting approach, and a couple can actually surprise you. As always, there's always a 'dead weight' character that are useless when you use it and have an improved, damaging effect once the CPU takes control. In my specific case, that's Carl Clover. Character interactions can make you laugh, and there are tonnes of bonuses to see and buy with points that you get in-game. Gaining points is easy, though it takes a lot of doing to get a good amount of them. I started playing a round while I was walking up the hill to work. Once I got close, I had to cancel, and I ended up getting 50 points. Not bad for quitting mid-battle. It made me laugh.

Story mode leaves a lot of questions, and you technically can't finish it 100% your first time playing it. I believe that the highest you can get at first is 62%, but I'll have to double check that. You can, of course, buy additional content in the game's store.

I'm pretty on the fence about BlazBlue. As I said before, my opinion is still completely forming. I haven't explored the game in its entirety as I haven't had time, and honestly, I haven't felt the urge. Right now, I'm currently knee deep into Final Fantasy II after finishing off God of War, but I'll be playing BlazBlue here and there. If and when I make more discoveries, I'll definitely keep you informed.

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