Friday Favorites: 2017 Games

Double Jump Kris MiiOnly a few more weeks until Christmas!

Amid everything happening in life, we’ve played quite a few awesome games that came out this year. This week, I’m celebrating some of my favorites that I’ve played!

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Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Alrightie, so this was more or less an improved version of a game that has been out for a few years. Nonetheless, when we had gotten the Switch, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe was one of the first games that we put on our list for the new console. With the new characters and tracks that had only been available previously as DLC, it was a good investment for us. Since then, we’ve had tons of fun playing the game with our cousins and the rest of our family!

Miitopia

This addictive and, at times, silly RPG was one of my top games due to how well it was written and how charming the graphics and characters were. Being able to customize your party and characters however you wanted while going through an intriguing adventure all helped push the game onto this list!

Fire Emblem Warriors

Hyrule Warriors was a great game for the Wii U, with placing characters from a favorite franchise into a new style of gameplay. Fire Emblem Warriors did something similar, and I had so much fun with the hack-and-slash game! While Hyrule Warriors had more diversity when it came to characters and attacks, Fire Emblem Warriors had more of a strategy and battle chaos that made me enjoy the gameplay much more.

Pokemon: Ultra Moon

It’s Pokemon. Obviously, the Pokemon game of the year is going to be on this list. I’m still playing it and, honestly, the story isn’t too different from the original Moon game yet in a way that has disappointed me a bit, but it’s a great adventure nonetheless. Seeing the Pokemon additions to the world, letting you fill up the National Pokedex easier than the previous versions, is fantastic. While your avatar still has a dopey smile on nearly the entire game, the other characters — Hau, Gladion, Lillie, for example — are wonderfully written.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

You guys really shouldn’t be surprised that this game is at the top of my list. I’m a Zelda fangirl through-and-through, and I have been waiting years for this game to come out. To see it in all of its open-world glory with a new twist on the same wonderful story was amazing to me! It’s a game that I’ll return to again and, honestly, probably won’t mind the DLC that gets released for it. I’ll use any excuse to return to that version of Hyrule.

What are your favorite games from this year?

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Friday Favorites: Best Pokeballs

Double Jump Kris MiiI can’t believe it’s already December… Everyone else ready for the holidays?

Rachel and I are still exploring Alola in Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, with Rachel being a little farther than me. While we’re both a bit more interested in the story and seeing where it goes, we do our best to try to catch any wild Pokemon we don’t have in our Pokedexes. Today is all about the best pokeballs, in my opinion, for the job!

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Dusk Ball

For the Alola generation of Pokemon games, I started off with Moon versions of the pairs. In Moon and Ultra Moon, the game is 12-hours ahead of the Sun versions (and the 3DS clock), making it nighttime when you play the game during the day. Dusk balls make it easier to catch Pokemon at night, or in dark places like caves, making them incredibly useful for me, especially this time around. Even when they were introduced in Generation IV, I used them often enough since I generally played the games later in the evenings after work.

Nest Ball

As someone who goes tends to go through the story parts of the game first then backtracks through routes to catch any wild Pokemon that may have been missed, I’m finding myself using Nest balls more often. With how quickly our parties of Pokemon grow with Exp. Share and plenty of battles, it’s easy for my Pokemon party to be too overpowered to merely weaken the wild Pokemon. Nest balls help when it comes to catching the lower-leveled Pokemon.

Friend Ball

Back in Generation II, when Happiness was first introduced, I loved being able to get Friend Balls from Kurt in Azalea Town. Even just the thought of a Pokemon being more friendly towards me when I first caught them was enough motivation for my younger self to use these pokeballs — I wanted my team to like me! They were always fantastic in helping to give Happiness a boost to the caught Pokemon.

Quick Balls

Whoever thought up of these pokeballs was a genius. Rachel and I tend to stock up on Quick Balls whenever we pass by a shop that sells them. Considering they work best when thrown at the beginning of a battle, it’s usually simple to just catch the wild Pokemon and move on, no weakening required. It’s not foolproof, no, but they work well for the most part.

What are your favorite pokeballs to catch Pokemon with? Any certain types of Pokemon that you love adding to your Pokedex?

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Character Spotlight: Gladion [Pokemon]

Happy Tuesday!

I can’t believe November has come and gone already… This month (the whole year) has flown by.

With the release of Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, I thought I’d talk about one of my favorite characters from the Alola region.

Gladion from Pokemon

Gladion was first introduced in November 2016 when Pokemon Sun and Moon was released for the Nintendo 3DS. He was a member of the rival team, Team Skull. His sister is Lillie, who happens to be a good friend of yours.

However, Gladion has different motives than Team Skull. One of the reasons I love Gladion is because he’s kind of an anti-hero in a way. He’s a double agent trying to do what’s best for Alola on the inside. He doesn’t agree with what his mother is trying to do, so he’s subtly rebelling.

He’s a good character and I think he was well rounded throughout the game. His character development was on point throughout the game and even though you’re meant to dislike him in the beginning, I always liked him. His character was intriguing to me and I had wished he was one of our friends from the very beginning.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Pokemon Sun and Moon had the best character development for all of their characters. I absolutely loved each character and Gladion is by far one of my favorites.

Do you like Gladion? Who’s your favorite character from Alola? Let me know in the comments below!

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First Impressions: Ultra Moon

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday! How was everyone’s Thanksgiving? I hope you all had a great weekend filled with family, friends, and fantastic food!

Our Thanksgiving was wonderful… then Rachel and I spent the rest of the weekend playing Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon!

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Rachel and I tend to try to “reward” ourselves with new video games around Thanksgiving for completing NaNoWriMo. After Thanksgiving dinner is over, our family rents a house in the mountains for the weekend where Rachel and I spend the time playing our games (with the occasional break for going out to eat and maybe shop with our parents).

Last year, we had Pokemon Sun and Moon. This year, it’s Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon.

It was fun getting back to Alola, especially since I haven’t really played Sun and Moon since this time last year. However… I expected a much different opening.

Honestly, when I first turned on Ultra Moon and saw nearly the same opening story, I paused and wondered if I had accidentally put last year’s game into my 2DS. The only difference seemed to be the appearance of the Ultra Retcon Squad, or whatever the robotic characters are called. I expected the Ultra pair of games to have more of a different story, like how Black 2 and White 2 took place after the original Black and White games. Instead, the story so far seems to be remarkably similar and it was disappointing.

Don’t get me wrong, Ultra Moon is still fun, and it’s been nice seeing the plethora of Pokemon that inhabit the islands, but I’m looking forward to when the story really starts to pan out. Otherwise, it feels as if I just paid for the same games as last year, almost as if the Ultra pair are expensive DLC. If the Ultra pair are supposed to be an improved version of Sun and Moon, I almost wish that Nintendo would have waited the extra year and just released the Ultra pair rather than the original games.

I’m about halfway through the trials at this point. Let’s see if it gets more exciting from here!

How are you liking Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon so far?

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Are You Excited For Pokemon Ultra Sun And Ultra Moon?

Happy Thursday!

It’s no secret that Pokemon is one of my favorite game franchises of all time. So, with Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon around the corner, I’m getting pretty excited.

 

Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

When Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon were announced, I wasn’t impressed. I mean, I was excited about another Pokemon game, but I didn’t get it.

Whatever happened to Pokemon Z for Pokemon X and Y? What about Stars for Sun and Moon?

I liked having the third game. I wanted Gray or Rainbow for Black and White and ended up with Black 2 and White 2. So, I assumed X and Y would have Z or X-Squared and Y-Squared. But we got nothing.

Now they’ve gone back to giving us two more “sequel” games just one year later since the first ones came out.

I’d complain, but it’s Pokemon. I know I’m going to get both games. I know I’m going to enjoy both games. And, as I said earlier, now I know it’s about a month away from being released, I’m beginning to get super excited all over again.

In Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, we’re able to finally go through the Wormhole and explore Ultra Space. I didn’t realize this was a thing I wanted until I saw the latest trailer for it.

New Ultra Beasts are introduced and so are new areas in an alternate dimension. It seems as though we have to play a certain “mini-game” to get there as well, which is a pretty cool touch. Who doesn’t want to ride Lunala or Solgaleo and control them? Even if it is for that one moment.

The areas inside the Ultra Space look pretty as well. Why we’re disturbed the poor Ultra Beasts in their home territory, I have no idea. However, there does seem to be a new plotline with new rivals, The Ultra Recon Squad.

Maybe they’re not “bad guys,” but they sure look like it.

And then, of course, there are new Pokemon. You can’t go wrong with new Pokemon.

I’m sure there are other updates to the game. I’ve heard there’s a new Trial and people are spreading rumors about Pokemon possibly being able to follow you, but… we’ll see.

Are you excited for this updated/sequel Sun and Moon? Let me know in the comments below!

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Video Game Bundles

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy September!

As kids, Rachel and I tended to wait until Christmas or our birthdays for new video games and consoles but, as adults, we squirrel away some money for these kind of occasions. Getting a new game here or there isn’t bad, but when they’re hard to find consoles or such, bundles look more appealing…

Usually when a shiny new game or console comes out, plenty of stores offer some sort of bundle to include the game or console with other trinkets. Generally speaking, these trinkets usually aren’t anything that we’d be interested in — such as little posters or figurines that, while look cool, would do nothing more than collect dust.

Case in point were the bundles that ThinkGeek were offering with the SNES Classic console. The SNES Classic itself is only about $80… I’m not convinced that the extra toys that come with the console even out the high price of the bundles. Is it really another eighty bucks for a mushroom plush, a mug, and a calendar? Most of the bundles looked nice, especially the Zelda-themed chess set, but I’m more interested in the console itself rather than the add-ons.

Of course, there are bundles that I wouldn’t mind getting. I’m honestly considering the Fire Emblem Warriors bundle that Nintendo is offering. Along with the Switch version of the game, you get a duel-sided poster, art cards, and 3 CDs of the game music. The art cards and poster look nice, but what I’m really interested in is the music. Video game soundtracks are my favorite kind of music, enough so that I don’t know anything on the radio nowadays.

The Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon bundle doesn’t seem too bad either. It comes with art cards and a code to get 200 pokeballs along with a version of each game. Rachel and I were considering it so each of us would get a game out of the deal and she could keep the art cards.

Price-wise, both bundles are about eighty dollars (which seems to be the magic number of this post). It’s about twenty bucks more than what the game would be by itself, but music comes along with it! It’s also the price of both Pokemon games put together, so that doesn’t seem too bad either.

It’s a shame gaming is such an expensive hobby, isn’t it?

Do you take advantage of video game bundles? What do you think of them?

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Thoughts on Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

Thoughts on Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

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When Nintendo announced Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, we were… disappointed, for lack of a better word. Shortly before this year’s E3 press conference, the Pokemon Direct announced a deluxe version of Pokken Tournament for the Switch, virtual console versions of Pokemon Gold and Silver, confirmed there will be a Pokemon game for the Switch, and then added Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon into the mix. But what happened to the third-tier games? And we just got Sun and Moon, what can they possibly update already?

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There seem to be a lot of aesthetic changes in the Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon trailer, from the main trainer designs themselves, to the few peeks of the islands we see. Instead of a sequel, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon are being hailed as remakes of the original Sun and Moon games. Perhaps Nintendo is adding more content that they hadn’t been able to add to the original Alolan duo of games? I admit, I was looking forward to perhaps a third-tier game and was a bit surprised at hearing that the next games would be the Ultra versions of Sun and Moon.

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I’m looking forward to the new games, whether they’re similar or not. It’s Pokemon, so of course, I’m going to buy both games. Still, I just thought it was strange that they’re remaking games that came out a year ago. With new forms of the Pokemon, the legendaries especially, I’m curious to see what kind of changes they made to the story.

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Release dates between the main core games have always been about a year and a half to two years, actually, but I am a little suspicious about a remake version just a year after the original came out. Again, perhaps there were more new mechanics that they wished to include but hadn’t been able to until the Ultra games. While the brighter environments in the Ultra games look nice, I’m not thrilled with the character designs. They’re cute, and maybe I’m just old, but I do hope that the characters have a few more facial expressions this time around. Despite how customizable their clothes and hair were in the original games, but faces were nearly always stuck in that goofy smile.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Right, but the fact that they announced the remarks just a few months after the originals came out, makes me wonder just how long they’ve had these games ready. And I forgot that we had stone faces… I hope they fixed that as well. We don’t see too much of our character in the reveal trailer though, so who knows?

krismii
Yes, the reveal trailer didn’t show too much of your character aside from the updated design, along with a few moves made by some Alolan Pokemon, and the legendaries’ updated looks, of course. I’m curious if Lillie, Hau, and Gladion will make another appearance. In the original games, the main character had just moved to the Alola region — is it the same case in the Ultra games? Will the main character already know the supporting characters from the original games, if the supporting characters are in the Ultra games as well?

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Well, that’s the thing. We don’t know anything about the story this time around. They showed off new designs and that’s about it. YouTuber GameExplain has some thoughts and I have to say that I agree with him. Feel free to watch his video and then let us know your thoughts.

What do you think of Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon? Are you excited for the games? Let us know in the comments below!

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