Welcome to the personal blog of Chary
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So, coming off the great year that was 2016, I was totally hyped and ready for what 2017 had in store...or so I thought. It only took a month before 2017 decided to kick me right in the face. And after losing those kittens, a close friend backstabbed me which forced me to remove them from my life, and then some no-lifer wannabe hacker dudebro decided to try and convince people I'm some sorta bigot, (lul?) and after that, my cats died again, right before a hurricane that fricken ruined all my everything. And now I gotta defer my college scholarship, cuz I'm living in a hotel since my house is gone, only to get through that nightmare for my aunt to die of a heart attack. So, 2017, I commend you, for going balls-to-the-walls in a massive attempt to make me go crazy.
I might be down, but I am not out! While some parts of 2017 have been horrible, there's still been a lot of amazing moments as well. I, again, got to have the fantastic opportunity to attend E3 for GBAtemp, built my first gaming PC, stumbled into meeting my awesome boyfriend, made tons of really good friends on this site, really got into twitch streaming for GBAtemp with my friends, and most recently, got to experience the generosity of the best darn web community I've ever seen. From the heartwarming donations, to the kind words, you guys on GBAtemp really went above and beyond. I feel so blessed to be a part of this site, and it's amazing members. So I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone, for all that they've done for me. I can hardly express how grateful I am, and how much this has touched my heart. Through the ups and downs that the rest of this year will bring me, I can always remember this and feel happy again.
sweet merciful crispy fried steak, it's 102F outside. God bless the person who created central cooling.
Through all the memes and jokes and trash posts, I have to admit, I really like the blog section. Though it's not really up to par with how it used to be way back when, I like to just mindlessly comment on stuff and blather on in my own little section. It's soothing, in a way. So hopefully none of my followers mind when they see the little red alert notification for this. I just wanted to take a moment for myself, and parse it all out.
Earlier this year, I mentioned that I had two baby kittens that died, due to fatal illnesses that they were born with. Though they were young kittens, their deaths hit me hard. But that couldn't even possibly measure up to what happened last month. Four of my cats dropped dead out of the blue. I came home one day, to see a small fluffy unmoving body, rigid, dead. I recoiled in horror, only to watch another cat behind me vomit blood, and weakly fall over, desperately meowing in pain. Another cat, my father's, knew enough to not make a spectacle of it, and died quietly, behind the washing machine. Lastly, I watched, agonized, and sobbed, over my favorite cat, the one that I had taught to open doorknobs so he could venture into my room when he felt lonely, raised with a bottle because he'd shown up on my doorstep as a baby kitten, and spent countless hours with, as he watched television, entranced as I play video games, because the flashy movements on screen captured his attention more than any tuna fish could. I put my heart and soul into that cat, and as he lay dying in my lap, I could do nothing but watch as he purred one last time, and passed on. He was too far gone to save.
With his littermate being the lone survivor, I pleaded, begged and sobbed to a vet to save her. I slammed every dollar in my savings on the table, demanding that something, anything, a miracle, could exist so that this cat could live. The veterinarians there looked at me in pity and confusion. There was no documented illness on file that matched up to what this cat had. "Perhaps poison...?", I was told. Able to do nothing but nod blindly, I could not rack my brain to find a cause for this tragedy. I don't know why this happens. Perhaps I'm not fated to own cats? As even my dog began to look lethargic and weak, the only common link was the food they ate. I threw the heavy, near full sack of cat chow into the trash, enraged. To get irrefutable proof, I would need to send both tissue sample in from my cat, and from the likely tainted food, an endeavor that would cost hundreds to achieve. But even if that were possible, I still had a cat to take care of.
The vet had shrugged and offered me a bag of saline solution, and an intimidating needle, telling me to inject the cat every few hours. My parents didn't have the strength to do so. On my own, I held down a suffering cat, and jammed a needle, barely mentally able enough to break skin, with shaky hands. Both me and the cat cried out, as I injected the IV. She lived, out of all of the others, she lived. She sits in my lap as I write this. A few days later, I would be sent to Oregon for a vacation with my family. My grieving time was barely a few days.
I only just now, after finally being back home, not busy running around doing other things, feel that I am able to process these events. Every day, I still open my door, and expect that cat to greet me. I try to cry, but I've long since run out of tears. Deep within my heart, I can feel slight resentment to my parents, who only chastised me when I brought up the idea of a vet. My mother didn't want to drive to a vet at 11pm, nor deal with the drama it entailed. The cat who died in my arms was likely too ill to be saved, but I run through "what ifs", wondering, idealizing, that maybe, just maybe, he had a chance.
The pain of loss is a heavy one. Though I know now, that I'm moving on, healing, the scars will stay with me. Forever. Do I want another cat, to pour my heart into, all over again? Or am I looking for a replacement that will fill an empty void? The one survivor cat is good, kind, but I look at her, and wish that it was another cat that lived instead.
Typing this all out, after a month of desperately burying this emotion, finally feels like I can accept the events that occurred. My path in life continues on, with so many new events and happiness out there waiting for me. I will always clutch to the fond memories I have of that cat, who was always by my side, when I was a lonely teenager. His passing feels like an end of an era. I now have friends that I value, opportunities to look forward to, a relationship that I treasure, and ideas that I now have time to dedicate towards. I've grown so much as a person, through those years I had that little fluffball. I can only hope, that maybe, just maybe, he's up in heaven, with the other cats that died, all of them having an amazing time, with no pain or suffering.
I initially started this blog with a grumpy tirade of Comcast's bad business practices, of how I'm grateful to the members of this community, and my excitement for writing, and streaming for GBAtemp. Instead, the above words are where my mind travelled to. To those that actually read this, well, hey, thanks. To those that don't, well, hey, hopefully you're reading a blog much happier in tone than this one turned out to be.
So yeah, blogs. I don't really use them commonly. But I do like writing, obviously, and I think this is one of those moments where I think enough stuff has happened as of late to warrant me just taking some time to just sit down and parse it all out. That way, I can look back a year later and cringe! That's the point of blogs, right?!
So where was I in life last time I did this? College prep and kittens...right? Things have been pretty wild since then! After my kitten passed, I actually developed a huge case of insomnia...I had, and I still have trouble sleeping. Sometimes I feel so tired, that I don't really have motivation to do anything. Other times, I would feel pumped up enough to read through multiple books in a day without stopping. It was tiring, mentally, not physically. I tried every trick in the book to sleep, but nothing was successful. Anyways, I can at least sleep for a few hours these days, so that's nice. But sometimes I just feel worn out.
I had a pretty bad bout with some self confidence issues lately, too. I was feeling pretty down about myself, just for some things, that in the end, were immaterial. But I still couldn't help but feel like I was getting crushed by all these things stacking up onto my head, or just falling and not being able to reach out.
Then placement exams came and hit me upside the head. And as I've said before, I was never the best student in recent times. But the time I've taken off to study and prepare paid off. All those years of skipping high school and another year consisting of me taking time off to find a career kinda hit my book smarts, a bit, I suppose. Not to say that I'm not intelligent, just that I wasn't really in a frame to properly throw myself into schoolwork again. And I had been pretty depressed, honestly, during that week, and some time surrounding it. But I picked myself up, and aced the tests, specifically English, which I was happy about! Math was middling per usual, but honestly, I expected worse!
After that, though, I had to deal with some pretty big changes to my daily life. Which irked me more than anything. Though, I don't regret it at all, now. A bunch of stupid chance coincidences led to me tripping and stumbling my way into being the happiest I've been in a while. This past month has been fantastic. Sometimes you need a slap to the face to realize things, and take a step back, and outside of your comfort zone, and escape from bad things. Of course. that might mean losing things you once thought important, but at the same time, you might realize that those things weren't worth reaching out to in the first place.
I quit out of my job, too. I couldn't justify the work for the pay, and honestly, I got exactly what I wanted from it, so I'm not sad. Content for a portfolio, and a nice recommendation for the future. So hooray! But now I've got some pretty sizable savings, and with my first two years of college being totally and completely paid for, I'm wondering what to do with it. I've found reason to save up for a goal, and the future, but then I notice, "hey, I'd love some nicer headphones." "Woah, look at the Switch!" "Oh man, my back hurts sitting in this chair, I should get an actual good one!" "Holy cow, I've been using this 3 dollar keyboard since 2001, and I'd love a new one!" And other such things.
Those events lead to me taking that happiness, and running with it. Nothing was going to come from me constantly feeling afraid of myself and the world around me. And thanks, to everyone in that little Discord server I cobbled together! Y'all seriously are great, and have helped cheer me up a lot <3 AND STOP WITH THE BOTS THO, WE'RE BREAKING REALITY. Really though, you're super cool, all of you.
With regards to games I've played this year, I actually haven't played many new things! Which is a bummer! But I'm playing Utawarerumono and Fire Emblem Echoes, and I'm liking both a lot! Kliff is definitely the most adorable teammate so far! Echoes might top out over Persona 5 for my PERSONA-L goty!!
Maybe by the time I finally wrap this up, the new episode of the podcast will be up! I'm having fun with recording it with the other staff, and I can't wait to do more episodes. Speaking of things that'll be happening, boy oh boy, it's almost time for E3! I'm so excited to go again! Seriously so thankful to Costello/T-hug/GBAtemp making it possible, and I hope the stuff I post will be good, and that everyone will enjoy it!
Also can we just take a moment to notice that Polygon is linking to my ban thread? I'm laughing so hard! they called me a "GBAtemp poster"! Yeah, I suppose I do occasionally, MAYBE post on GBAtemp from time to time! Hahaha!
Anyways, thanks for reading this ramble! That is, if you managed to force your way through all the words~! <3
Side note: Houston Texas is the fourth largest American city, you'd assume they'd have their stuff together and be competent.
Comcast: lol Internet outage in Houston area
Me: sigh, fine I can use mobile data today
AT&T: lol cell tower down, have fun with non functioning cell signals all day in Houston area
electric company: Hello, we're informing you that we have mistakenly cut a line on your street block. We are sorry you are without power right now.
Me: huh? Looks up
Power goes out
So...it's been a week since it all happened. And as of this morning, it's all over. My little kitten died today.
This is a blog, right? So that's the purpose...to write, and to vent...and I just need to process it all.
It started, long, long ago, in a far away land. Actually...it was 5 weeks ago, and in the hallway closet. My two cats that I had rescued about a year ago wound up having kittens together. 4 of them, to be exact. One kitten was dead-on-arrival. A horrible sight, but not too unexpected with kittens. Then, the kittens lived in a little box I made for them. I would check on them every day for 5 weeks, and watched their eyes open, and their ears stick up. Occasionally, I would pick them up and pet them for a bit. As all kittens are, they were very, very cute.
Then, one day, I heard a very upset sounding squeak from outside my room. Rushing to see what was wrong, I found my dog, having broken into their box, with a kitten in his mouth. Terrified, I yelled at the dog to drop it, and, to his credit, he did. The kitten fell with a plop, and scuttled off like nothing happened. Relieved, I thought to myself that that one little cat would definitely need to be watched more than the rest. A typical siamese cat, with deep blue eyes and overly large ears, his name (though not yet in that moment) was Phoenix.
Five weeks into their existence, I noticed that the runt of the litter, the lightest kitten, named Cuddles, began to look frail. Worried, I bought a pet bottle and some formula for him, and gave it to him. However, it seemed that things would not work out in the end, as the poor little baby cat would be dead the next morning. I will never forget his final moments, him trying to follow his mother, while his body slowly shut down, and me, on the sidelines, horrified, unable to do anything, as Cuddles's back legs gave out, and he kept dragging himself along the floor, trying to reach his mother, who wanted nothing to do with him. I could feel a part of my heart breaking right then and there. I sat with him through the entire ordeal, a whopping 6 hours, until he finally lay down next to me on a pillow, and passed, with a final pained shriek.
Dazed, I had fallen into a bit of a frightened shock. It was mortifying to watch, to deal with. Luckily, the other two kittens seemed healthy and happy. That wouldn't last long.
It took one day. And Phoenix had become lethargic, unable to walk, or to eat. Determined, I planned to get to the Pet Hospital, to save this cat. It was my mantra, it was what I was clinging on to, I didn't want to fail him. I was the only one who had a chance to save him. I woke up at 6AM, to whimpers from him. I hadn't slept more than 3 hours that night, and it didn't take me more than 5 minutes to grab the kitten in a sleepy daze, along with my keys, and rush out the door. My father watched incredulously from the window, and none too happy to see his daughter about to go off to the pet hospital, which is, located near a mental ward, the town's busiest street, and a string of confirmed lowlife criminals all living together in an seedy apartment. Stumbling, it hit my over-tired brain that I needed a method of transportation. There was no car, and I couldn't walk all that way, even if I had all the determination in the world.
The next best choice was to get my bike. But how does one carry a dying baby kitten on a bike? I shoved him into my old backpack, strapped it to my front, and took off, looking like a loon. Young teenage girls howled in laughter as I wobbled past the school on my bike, trying to shove the head of an indignant cat back into the bag, so he wouldn't fall out. Of course, he had been completely lethargic, but now that he needed to stay still? Oh no, he knew he needed to cause more trouble, so at every turn, he'd pop his head out, to look at his surroundings. A school guard watched me go along the sidewalk, and blocked my way, stepping onto the sidewalk so I would have to come to a screeching halt, yelling for me to go back and get to class. However, I was having none of that. Furious, I screamed that, "I don't go to your trashy school!" and hopped the bike into the grass, continuing on my warpath. He yelled something in reply, but I was too focused to pick up on what he said.
This is where the quaint middle-class part of town suddenly becomes scumville, There's a WM Waste Management plant, a glass crushing facility, and a swamp. Needless to say, the foul chemicals in the air were enough to make even the strongest gag.yyyyyyyyy9 Uh, sorry, my older cat laid on the keyboard, and I thought it fitting to include. In that moment, I regretting not having any water prior, as I felt like I had ventured into a desert. In my tired state, I made the wrong turn, wound up at a dead end, took another wrong turn, as my phone told me to go the longer route for absolutely no reason. Frustrated, I slowed down to catch my breath. Phoenix must have been frustrated too, because he decided he was sick of just watching the horribly ugly scenery, and wanted to explore for himself. He flung himself from the backpack, launching his small kitten self towards certain death. Of course, I reacted without thinking, and I, too, recklessly reached out to catch him. But, as physics teaches us, that's not going to end well when on a 2-wheel device. I tumbled off the bike, onto a dirt road, kitten raised high in my right hand, shielded from damage. The bike kept with its inertia and slid off into the grass, dragging me and my charge along with it. I stared at the sky, in only mild irritation, still too focused with my one-track plan of getting the cat to the vet, as my arm limply fell, allowing the kitten to jump off and explore happily. He twitched his head to the side, looking right into my eyes, as he ran off into the bushes.
Sometimes you can just tell a cat is going to be unique. That look he gave me in that moment is when I knew for sure.
As I limped, with an injured leg, smashed by the pedal driving itself right into my ankle, I wondered if the cat really was sick, as he ran in circles, looking overjoyed. But I was nearly there, and I needed to keep going. I stumbled into the vet, looking like I needed a doctor myself. Overwhelmed, I babbled, tearfully, to the attendant in the lobby that I needed someone to help my kitten. Within minutes, two veterinarians were helping my kitten. The verdict? He was very cold, and either had an easily curable cold, or something fatal, and it would only cost me $500 to check. As the info wouldn't even be able to cure him if he did have something deadly, I turned down that particular deal of the century. They shot Phoenix full of electrolyte water, and gave me a pack to inject him with at home, daily. The visit had cost me $200, just to have them say kittens need to be warm when they eat, otherwise the food doesn't process. I thought back to Cuddles, wondering if my efforts were in vain, all because I hadn't known to keep him on a heating blanket.
Hours passed, and Phoenix looked to be better. I was overjoyed, and hopeful that he would get better. That is where he got his name, after all. He ran around and played, sat with me, and purred, and was just the cutest kitten I'd ever seen. And I've seen a lot of cats. Sometimes, you can see that certain cats just have more personality to them than others. He's one of those special cats, the kind that only come around very rarely.
It wouldn't last long, though. The next day, he lay comatose, limp, and looking so very ill. I panicked, I was distraught, how could he be dying?! He had gone to the vet! He was running around just an hour ago! I was dragged from the room, crying, and as I hadn't slept in a day, I inevitably passed out. When I awoke the next morning, only about five hours later, I expected to see the kitty gone. But there he was, looking right at me, and he meowed happily. Baffled, yet overjoyed, I thought he would finally make it out of this nightmare illness he had. I spent each day with this cat, feeding him, watching him, helping him, petting him. Every waking hour was spent towards this fluffy bundle of cute, and my constant worrying left little time for sleep, perhaps 3 hours at most a day.
I honestly couldn't even tell you how many days passed. My sense of time is all thrown off. It feels like years went by, but I know it's only been about a week. My final memories with him, are of him being perfectly healthy, pawing at my headphones, utterly confused by the sound they emitted. And then, of him jumping up from my lap, and pawing at my monitor, as I played Fire Emblem. He was entranced by the colors, and something about it made him want to catch whatever flashed by on screen.
That was at about 5AM...when I awoke at 9AM...he was gone. I had left him in his little bed, with a nice blanket, and he lay in it, no longer moving, no longer breathing. The kitty that I poured so much love, effort, and joy into had died. And with it, he took a chunk of my heart. It quite honestly hurts to even think about it, and I feel broken over it. According to the vet, he had died of a brain disease, and he shouldn't even have been alive for nearly half the time he was. Phoenix fought so hard to stay alive, to keep going, and I gave my all to help him do that. But nothing could have been done for a condition like that. It's horrible, and it sucks so badly, and I'm just so mad that I couldn't save him. I wanted him to live, to have a full life of happiness, and to see this adorable little unique cat grow up. But things don't always work out, and now I'm here, typing this up. I just needed to tell his story, just to let others know, that Phoenix existed, and he was a very, very special cat.
If you have a pet that you love, don't take the time with them for granted. Animals don't get a very long time with us on this earth, and it's important to remember that you have to make the most of their life-span. Thanks, uh, for reading all that, if you did. I know a few members here knew about him already, from Majin Cubyan naming him "Cinnabun", to x65 knowing that I liked to call Phoenix crazy little names like Flufflemuffins, and Hugglekins. I'm sure he's in heaven, having fun, playfully jumping out of all the big backpacks in the sky, landing on clouds and enjoying himself without pain.
Full name: Cha REEEE
Pronunciation: NOT CHERRY
Species: Human, probably
Sexuality: Lion Bars
Nationality: Half Persian, half PURE AMERICAN FREEDOM
Place of Birth: In the land of spoken "y'all"s
Currently living: I should hope I am
Languages Spoken: English, pathetic/broken french and spanish
Relationship Status: I'm attracted to posting news
Height: 5'2, enough to need a ladder to even look at people
Weight: 1,632 ounces
Figure: Pretty much Taiga Aisaka
Piercings: I'd rather not make my ears into swiss cheese
Facial hair: Females sadly cannot grow wizard beards, so no
Preferred style of clothing: Whatever reflects the inside of my SOOOOOOOOOOOUL
Likes: News, Lion Bars
Dislikes: Writing this blog, Running out of Lion Bars
Hobbies: news, drawing, baseball, procrastination, eating lion bars
Music: Alt rock, the sounds of Lion Bars being opened
Talents: Can pretend to be a memer, can procrastinate so hard the fabric of the world tears apart, can kill a man in 50 different ways for a single lion bar
1 Dr. Pepper a month
Went out shopping today, to celebrate my birthday early. Had a ton of fun, and those of you who know me, know my one and only love in life; the Lion bar, and well, I got a whole giant box of them! Yahoo!
I'm still waiting on the last part of my PC to arrive in the mail, and soon, oh so very soon, I will be playing games at only the highest framerates available!
I also went down to the Houston Heights, where I ventured into a restraunt called "Lee's donuts and chicken". Interesting, I thought. The sign was quite literal, to my shock, as when I got my order, it was a chicken-donut-sandwich. Heart attack here I come!
Tomorrow I turn 20. It's quite horrifying, actually! I can't imagine myself as a 20 year old, heck, people tell me I look 15 still! Time flies way too fast.
But yeah. Just wanted to write that up. Can't wait for 2017, hopefully even more great things happen then!
So, I'll be honest. I was never a good high school student. Constantly skipping, missing assignments, apathetic to the whole high school deal, spending a lot of that time being sick, too, a whole lot... Essentially, I only ever attended perhaps 3/4ths of my freshman year, and just popping in from time to time past those years, just to pick up all my papers and do a semester's year of work in a week or two. Of course, that plan was bad, and I was lazy, so a few courses slipped through the cracks on occasion. My GPA was a whopping 1.7, my report card was two ends of a spectrum, I either got all A's, or all F's. No inbetween. So of course, younger me could not have cared less about college. "Oh come on, the world'll probably be over by the time I'm 19, yeesh". But time trudged on, and I had to come face to face with the results of my actions.
I took the ACT, for those that don't know, its a college prep exam, that gives a metric of how you compare to the country. I studied for about 3 days. I went into a college exam with the knowledge of half-baked middle school teachings and a few trigonometry formulas thrown at me by my friends. My results were a 27. I had been excited to get such a score, without any high school knowledge, no less, being pretty much self-taught. Little did I know, but that 27 would carry me all the way.
Filling out my college application, there were really only two choices for me, since I don't have the funds to just go and attend school outside my city. There was the ivy league Rice University, for those that were brainiacs with 4.0+ GPAs and nothing less. Then there was the University of Houston, a fairly top tier college, for Texas standards. (Of course, community college WAS an option, but...my family would have hated it and had been highly disappointed in me for personal reasons.)
UofH has a policy, that if you get a 27 on your ACT, and you are above the top 50% of your graduating class, you get accepted automatically. Junior year of high school, even with my slacking, I had been in the top 49% of students. I laughed and applied, thinking it'd be a breeze. I didn't account for my classes I had been taking at that very moment, which turned into F's later on. Which brought me below the 50% ranking, and took me straight out of the automatic admission bracket.
I'm getting rambly at this point, and my hands are shaking, so I'll keep this short: Despite every stupid choice I made when I was younger, as of 10 minutes ago, I was accepted into University of Houston. I dunno how they thought I deserved it, perhaps they're desperate? Maybe they just needed people with decent ACT scores? Is there a deficiency in their English program?! Who knows. But...I DID IT! I'm going to a high ranking University, to get an English degree, y'all!
I can now proudly walk up to all of the people who hated me in high school, every teacher that sneered at me, and grin like an idiot, waving my acceptance letter for all to see. I WIIIIIIN!!! FUAHAHA!
Woohoo! We're almost to December, and it's that time of year again, where we put down the pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin flavored chocolates so that we can instead pick up some eggnog and cinnamon-infused candles and spend money like there's no tomorrow! 2016 is nearly done, and with the exception of just a handful of games, the 2016 gaming release calendar is pretty much over too. But before we turn our attentions to 2017's biggest releases like Horizon Zero Dawn, Persona 5, and everything Nintendo Switch related, I'd like to make a little blog entry about my favorite games I played in 2016. I did a little blog similar to this last year, and I had fun writing it, so I might as well do it again, a little preemptive this year, but alas, I'll be a little inactive from this week up til the new year. I won't be covering games that released in 2016, mind you, as I assume GBAtemp will once again do another yearly poll focusing on modern releases, and I'll share my opinions there. So with that, let's get to it. As I did a top 15 for 2015, how about a top 16 for 2016?
16. Uncharted 3
I'll be honest, in retrospect, I'm not much of a fan of the Uncharted series. 1 is a bit too dated for my tastes, and 2 was a boring cover shooter with a lot of set pieces and beautiful graphics. 3 at least is a refinement to the formula, and it held my attention throughout its campaign. I'd still rather watch Raiders of the Lost Ark though.
15. Star Ocean SNES
I'm a sucker for SNES-era RPGs, and Star Ocean took advantage of that fact. The gameplay isn't revolutionary, but it has its high points and interesting mechanics, and the while story feels a little cheesy at times, t's like anime meets Star Trek. And who wouldn't love that?
14. Bushido Blade
Are you looking for a unique and detailed fighter from the PS1 era? Well have I got the game for you. Bushido Blade is a neat fighting game that has you play as 6 different swordfighters with 8 seperate weapons to choose from. Each weapon has a uniqueness to it, such as better reach with a longsword, faster attacks with a rapier, or a mix of the both by using a katana. Despite being 30fps on the original hardware, the game plays smoothly, and the animations are very fluid and nice to watch. If traditional fighter games are getting a little repetitive to you, this will certainly be a great change of pace.
Though it gets a little boring at times to endlessly grind through enemies over and over, Disagea makes up for that by having a quirky cast and some fun writing. There's a lot of interesting gameplay mechanics going on here, although they feel a bit clunky, (Which I assume get more refined in later games) it's still worth a play for those that like SRPGS.
A reboot of the PS2's SSX series, the blandly named SSX is a definite worthy successor to Tricky and 3. The jump to HD allows for higher drops and more obstacle-laden courses, while still retaining what made the games so lovable to begin with.
11. Gravity Rush
One of the best games to show off the capabilities of the poor Vita, Gravity Rush offered a really cool platforming experience and had a lot of creativity put into it. The art design is especially well done, and though its a bit short, this is a game that every Vita owner should check out.
10. Pillars of Eternity
Hope you like classic old school isometric RPGs and are ready to invest yourself with a mountain of lore and world building, because developer Obsidian is back and ready to prove that consumers are still willing to play these types of games. Though it can get wordy and confusing, especially when you're thrown in at the start with long winded encyclopedia level instructions to guide you, Pillars rewards players with an amazingly detailed world full of interesting characters. So much so that it can be almost too overwhelming to handle.
9. Hatsune Miku Project Mirai DX
Playing a bit differently from the Project Diva series, Mirai instead has you matching notes to the music as they pass over a constantly moving line. I like this style, perhaps even more than the standard style, and it's quite fun. One of the 3DS's best rhythm games, for sure.
8. Story of Seasons
It's no Stardew Valley, but Story of Seasons picks up the Harvest Moon mantle fairly well. It holds itself to the classic formula, and adds a number of activities for you to do each day. However, you'll have to stick with a relatively lackluster start and power your way through it to get to the good part of the game. A lot of improvements need to be made to match the older entries, in my opinion, but there's some great new stuff here for fans of the genre.
7. Persona 4 Dancing All Night
Okay the story was total crap, let's not beat around the bush. You're here for fanservicey goodness that includes your favorite Persona 4 characters (not that kinda fanservice, get your mind outta the gutter). The remixes of the P4 tracks are great for the most part, and there's all sorts of costumes and songs to unlock so fans will have a great deal of fun here. Just don't expect much more than an okay rhythm game with a Persona skin to it and you'll like it for what it is.
6. Dragon Ball Z Hyper Dimension
Incredibly well done sprites, coupled with a fighting system that goes even further beyond what the Butoden series offered, Hyper Dimension is one of the best 2D DBZ fighting games out there. The ability to hop into the background to dodge attacks adds a nice layer of depth to the gameplay. Your ki and health are tied to the same bar, which is another cool addition here, which keeps things tense.
5. Fire Emblem: Sacred Stones
Surely not the best Fire Emblem that I've ever played, but still a decent entry. As much as I love FE: Awakening, the Fire Emblem series just works so well in a 2D style, and this title helps show that off. The animations and spritework is just as good as it was in Fire Emblem 6 and 7, and while I didn't like it as much as 7, Sacred Stones' gameplay and challenge is much more balanced than it was in 6. It can be fairly unchallenging to older fans, but if you're looking to play one of the older games after only trying the newer Fire Emblems, this is a great starting point.
4. 9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors
The entire Zero Escape series is insane. Crazy twists, lots of dying, and some of the best writing in a visual novel that I've ever read. 999 beats out the later sequels in terms of writing, but the entire series is worth playing, and luckily, 999 will be coming to PC and Vita later this year, so you definitely should try out this fantastic game then.
3. Paper Mario TTYD
It takes the foundation that Paper Mario 64 built and massively improves upon it. Quirky teammates, great dialogue, solid gameplay, and typical wacky Nintendo humor. What more could you ask for? I wouldn't put it above Super Paper Mario, but it's definitely the second best paper-based Mario RPG I've ever played.
2. Tales of Vesperia
I'm making this choice a little pre-emptive since I've only put in a bit over 10 hours, and still have a ways to go. But I am really enjoying this game so far, and if Tales of the Abyss is anything to go by, I know I'll love this one by the end as well. The characters are great, the story is...decent, and the gameplay is fun. Definitely glad that I bought an Xbox for this.
1. Rocket League
This game is crack. I'm serious, it's one of the best games I've ever played. I could play this for hours on end without stopping, and I have. If I didn't have to sleep, I would play Rocket League for an eternity. I absolutely recommend the game to people who have at least one friend and enjoys playing matches online, hardcores that love competition, or even casuals looking to have a little fun.
Other games that I completed this year:
Arslan: The Warriors of Legend
MegaTagmension Neptune + Blanc VS Zombies
Odin Sphere Leiftrasir
Fire Emblem Fates
Dead Rising 2
Trails of Cold Steel
Star Ocean 5
Saints Row 3
Ace Attorney 6
Streets of Rage 1 3D
Shin Megami Tensei 4 Apoc
Attack on Titan
Forza Horizon 3
Guilty Gear XX
Steins Gate 0
Chase Cold Case
Assassins Creed Syndicate
Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
Dragon Ball Fusions
And there we have it. Whew! I'm hoping to finally tackle the Metroid and Ys series next year, as I've still never played a single one of those games. Fire Emblem Path of Radiance and Final Fantasy V look fun as well, so hopefully they live up to the hype. And then there's every that's coming in 2017. So many games to play, and only less and less time to play them as time goes on. 2017 will be a huge year for me, and I know that college will surely take away a lot of time for me to play games like I've been able to this year. But gaming and reviewing is something that I really value, so of course I'll make sure to find a way to keep on top of everything! I hope 2016 has been a good year for everyone, or at the very least, that 2017 looks hopeful to you. Thanks for reading, guys, and I'll seeya next year.
Does...does this still count as following the trend?
I'm not part of the LGBT+ community. As far as I know, I'm a straight cis female. A couple years back I had a few thoughts like, "I don't really like being a chick" or "I think I'd prefer being a guy", and while I've dismissed such ideas by this point, I still have moments where I think, huh, I don't really like such and such factor of being female. My parents recently told me that as a baby, I adamantly hated wearing dresses and skirts, even though at that young of an age, I would have no idea what they were! I found that amusing. As a kid, and even to this day, I wore a lot of "boys" clothing, not for any other reason than that "girls" clothing always felt kinda uncomfortable and "weird" to me. (#burnalldresses2k16) I'll sometimes bind my chest just 'cuz because I think "Err...I'm uncomfortable without doing so". In the past year or so, whenever I do anything that could be considered "not-feminine", my parents get worried and ask me, "Do you want to be male?", and honestly, I don't (to their relief, probably). I just kinda prefer to be, I guess a tomboy? Not anything really important. I like who I am, and I like doing my own thing. But anyways, this is getting rambly, and kinda awkward I think, so I'll cut it short.
GBAtemp has such a wide range of people and orientations and everything, and it's really heartwarming to see everyone being so accepting of each other. Good luck and congratulations to everyone who's reaching towards trying to be themselves. Keep being awesome, y'all.
~Flashback~Months after hacking their Wii, a bored 15 year old girl decides to join some weird site that she'd been anonymously frequenting. That sole moment set in motion a crazy set of events that'd determine many things in her life.
October 1, 2012
E-er, I don't mean to be so dramatic there, but it's true.
Wow. Just, wow. It's been 4 years since I've joined GBAtemp. That's wild. In the grand scheme of things, and by comparison, 4 years isn't really that long of a time, but 2012 feels so far away to me right now. I was a kid then, I studied intensely, and I had just entered the top high school in the state. I had nearly died a few months prior, my dad had suffered a stroke, my cats had all been killed. I planned on going to Rice University and being an engineer when I grew up. I was overly sheltered and naive. Pokemon Black and White 2 were about to come out. In a few short months, I'd soon cast away so many things that held me back.
Now, I'm almost 20. Soon, I'm going to go to the University of Houston, to major in journalism and writing. (A much better profession, and one that I actually like, to boot) My health has improved a lot. I'm still a little naive, but I've finally come into my own as a person. And, as cheesy as it sounds, I owe a lot to GBAtemp.
Shortly after joining this site, I'd begun talking to a group of members on here, who were all very friendly. Though many from that group have come and gone, I became good friends with a few of them. During those first 3 years after joining, those people were invaluable to me, as I was never a social person at school, almost always disliked by my peers, and even teachers, due to my habit of being absent constantly, since I was a sickly child. Talking to them via chat helped me get a grasp on how people worked, how to be tactful, and not afraid to speak up. I'm pretty sure two of you are reading this, so thanks, guys. Not to mention, posting in the forum itself was just a really great stress reliever, and I could always find some sorta fun thread to post in.
Another big thing that's changed in the span of 4 years since my registration here; If you couldn't tell, I'm part of GBAtemp's magazine staff team, as a reporter. Thug giving me a chance with Dynasty Warriors turned some random whim I had about writing into something that I really wanted to pursue. I love writing and reviewing, and I mean, having an opportunity like this is just so cool! Things got even better, when I was allowed to go to E3 and see the insane, but awe-striking amazingness of the industry. (Shh, amazingness is totally a word what do you mean its not?) So thank you, Thug, Costello, and really, just everyone. You're all great!
Okay, am I getting too dorky with all this? I think I am. I just wanted to thank everyone, and the site, for everything.
So let's have 4 Charmanders to celebrate the occasion, old school style! Here's to another 4 years!
P.S. Hey, look, some old posts I made.
If only Nintendo would make an HD Zelda game...keep dreaming, you silly 2012 dreamer, you.
Hahaha. It'd be a real shame if the remakes ended up sucking, wouldn't it?
Silly young Chary, that's not how you news.
Ye olde Pokeflood anticipation
Heyo, avid blog readers of GBAtemp. Whilst waiting for Forza Horizon 3 to download, I've been sitting here just staring at my PC, willing the download to go faster. Of course, that won't work (Or will it?! continues staring intently) so I should actually do something with my time. So I'm going to just prattle off a little list of my personal favorite games. Why? Because I think it'd be fun to sort it all out, of course! Now if you haven't gotten bored and started reading other things, let's get started. Prerequisites: No multiple games in a series, otherwise we'd be bogged down by Personas, 999 series and Ace Attorneys.
Ghost TrickWhat happens when you remove Shu Takumi from the courtrooms of Ace Attorney? Ghost Trick, apparently. A great puzzle game, with an amusing cast of characters that really grow on you by the end. This is a game I'd recommend to anybody.
Simpsons Hit N RunThe best Grand Theft Auto game. Maybe it's my fanatical love of the Simpsons cartoon, and racing through an open-world Springfield with all the witty dialogue and jokes the series is known for going full force never fails to entertain me, and it causes me to ignore that the latter half of the game is completely aggravating compared to the fantastic first half. Hmm...nah. It's perfect.
Odin Sphere LeiftrasirSomeone wrote a perfect, flawless, amazing review of the game. They're just so awesome. Why not read their review? H-huh? coughs This is how ALL remakes and remasters should be done. Pulling off insane combos in this game is just so much fun. And come on, with that artwork, it's so pretty. Vanillaware, you're the best.
Virtue's Last RewardMan, this game has more twists and turns than a rollercoaster. And here I thought 999 was king of that, but nope, here's VLR, ready to kick you in the face with it's insanity and plot.
Donkey Kong Country: Tropical FreezeDKC: Returns was a great revival of the classic hardcore Nintendo platformer, and Tropical Freeze took that winning formula and ran with it. It also helps that David Wise's soundtrack compositions are superb.
DishonoredWhile the opening to the story is laughable and a little cheesy, Dishonored more than makes up for it with its combat. You can either be ultra stealthy and teleport your way through, never killing a soul, or you could just drop in on your targets like an atom bomb and go off on a full murder spree with all sorts of cool power ups. It's like two games in one! And I mean, you gotta love those janky ragdoll animations, amirite?
Rune Factory 4Boy, I sure do love me some waifu hunting. Eh? What do you mean farming? Combat? What's that? You can tame creatures? There's a whole bunch of great things to do besides giving items to all the potential lovers candidates? Whaaaaaaaa.
Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi 3It sounds like a weird choice at first, but give it a chance. BT3 not only has literally every DBZ character playable in some form, but actually has a wildly complex fighting system. There's a lot of payoff if you're willing to learn how to combo. ...Or you could just button mash and hope to win. ...That works too.
Pokemon Fire Red"GENWUNNER!" I hear you cry in distress. "The newer games are so much better!" you yell, defensively. I'll give it up to the phys/special split and all the goodies that were added in later gens making for much better gameplay. But something about the music, the region of Kanto, the remake's 16/32 bit feel, it just altogether felt like a much more interesting game than BW2/XY/Etc etc. (Ugh I will never get used to 3D models in battles. Yuck) Gold and Silver are sweet sequels, but you can never top the originals (or their remakes)
Shin Megami Tensei 4 ApocalypseLet's see...if I fuse this one with that one...I can get this. Oh but I have to make sure it has some strong elemental attacks. And I gotta fill the partner gauge before I fight the boss...
She's too deep in thought to notice you. Perhaps you should read a review on the game and come back later...
Rocket LeagueWhat a save! What a save! Nice shot! What a save! I've got this one! What a save! gg.
Pokemon Mystery Dungeon SkyBack when the first Pokemon Mystery Dungeon games came out, young Chary was enraptured by the premise of the Mystery Dungeon spinoffs. The second entries in the franchise are the best, in my opinion, though the first ones are good as well. And I mean...Time/Darkness/Sky managed to pull off some decent story writing. In a Pokemon game. Yeah, I know right? Crazy.
One high school class
3 copies of Ace Attorney
a pinch of despair
one battle royal situation
Mix all ingredients in blender, on high. Pour into glass and garnish with hope.
Final Fantasy VIThis is the best Final Fantasy game.
sees incoming rage mob
Yoshi's Island/Super Mario WorldThese two games, along with something later on this list, are the best of the best, in terms of 2D platforming games. Yoshi's Island's level design is A+, and just everything about Super Mario World is utterly fantastic. You don't get much better than this.
Castlevania: Symphony of the NightI think I could get away with saying that, objectively, this is one of the greatest games of all time. It's challenging enough to make you be competent at the game, but not hard enough to curbstomp you into next week. It's got so much exploration, you might not leave your room for weeks after starting the game. There's a bunch of skills and cool stuff to find, how could you not like this game?! Go play it already! What's that? You've already played it 10 times? Well make it 11!
Fallout New VegasCan we just get a mod that mixes 4's gunplay with New Vegas? Get on it, modders, thanks. F:NV is a little dated with its gun controls, but it's one of the best WRPGs out there. It really gives players freedom to do whatever they want. There's a million ways to do even the simplest of things, and I love Obsidian for allowing so much choice. Bethesda, stop trying to write Fallout related stuff and buy out Obsidian and make them do your bidding, k?
Assassin's Creed IIHey look! It's that series that had one amazing game before they decided to milk the series to the bone. And there's never been a good entry since. If you ever want to play the Assassin's Creed series, start and end here. Although you could move on to Brotherhood, but that's honestly more like a really large albeit good DLC expansion rather than a sequel.
Phoenix Wright: Ace AttorneyOBJECTION! Trials and Tribulations is the better game! Well, perhaps you're right, random voice in my head. But the first Ace Attorney game laid the groundwork that made the third entry of the series so good. With stellar writing, memorable characters, and hilarious dialogue, there's a reason this series is happily celebrating it's 15th anniversary this year. ...because Capcom keeps milking the series. runs
Tales of the AbyssWhat makes a JRPG good? Is it the characters? The plot? the battle system? The world building and immersion? All of the aforementioned, and then some? Probably. While I don't think this game is the absolute pinnacle in any of those categories, Tales of the Abyss is definitely a favorite of mine. Everything about it seemed to resonate with me, from the nice art style, to the fun (although not as good compared to later entries like Graces F or Hearts R. Hey, what's the deal with this series and adding random letters to its remakes, huh? I guess they make sense, though) battle system, and everything in between.
Fire Emblem AwakeningCasual shipping scum ruined muh hardcore SRPG! Naw. While the story is a bit generic this go around, FE:A pulled off having a great cast of characters, made obtaining supports actually not suck, and well, it was good enough to save the franchise from Nintendo-purgatory. (Hello Metroid and F-zero, how are you doing--oh) Need I say more?
Steins;GateFuahahaha! You there, mere mortal, it was the choice of Steins Gate that brought you to my very blog. Watch as I demonstrate to you why, with my genius intellect!
E-eh? Pardon me, I lost myself for a second there. Steins;Gate is one of those games that you play, you complete, and it just kinda, stays with you for a while. This visual novel hits every hit note in the genre, and is absolutely gripping. It's better than the anime, which is already one of the greatest in the medium. If you're every looking for a game with a good story, or somewhere to start with visual novels, this is the best one to pick.
Sonic 3Gawh. This game is just so perfect. Between Sonic 3 and Super Mario World, 2D platforming hit a peak so high, I don't think 2D platformers will ever reach this greatness ever again. There's just so much to explore and find, but you can also speedrun the levels like a madman if you care to memorize and learn the intracacies of the level design. I've played this game once a year at least, since 1999. It's just that good. Over and over and over again, it never fails to be a fantastic game.
Animal Crossing...I'm not sure I've invested enough time into this series to give you a solid verdict yet. Come back to me once I've put in another 3,000+ hours.
Persona 4: GoldenWhy is this game so good? It's just so good. I love this game. Can I marry this game? Look, I'll put a little tuxedo on it and everything. See? In all seriousness, Persona 4, and its remake, Golden, are top tier JRPGs. Good characters? Check. Fun things to do and explore in the world? Check. Some of the greatest game music ever to grace my ears? Checkaroni. Best girl of all time? You darn well better believe that's a check.
As the years pass, I notice many games come and go from what I consider personal favorites. I look forward to the future where I can look back on this and see what great games I'll have played a year or more from now.
Wow did anyone even read all that? I know I sure didn't.
PS. For those who remember my last blog, I got some white chocolate Lion bars a few weeks ago. Life is complete.
PPS. Making a click baity drama title for this blog was so tempting.
PPPS. Honorable mentions: Mario 64, Muramasa--you were easily replaced by your newer, funner brethren, Tales of Graces F, Chrono Trigger, Road Rash Genesis/Mega Drive and Super Paper Mario.
PPPPS (Is that even how these work) inb4 no OOT, riot riot riot.
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