Well, okay, I wouldn’t go so far as to call Final Fantasy: Anniversary feculent, per se, but man, it really has some issues. Rest in peace, Square. You were glorious, inventive, flawed but magnificent in your time, before the dark times. Before the merger. You done good all those years, and I can’t think of a more glorious swan song than Final Fantasy XII. I’ll pour a 40 of Potion on the curbside in your memory.
Because seriously, who wants to drink that crap?
My vow to swear off of Pokémon has been only moderately successful. I’m not really playing, but when I can pop open my DS lid and get a five-minute fix anytime, the clock time adds up over the course of the day. Mostly I’ve been dooting around with the breeding and trading mechanics. The Global Trade System is a glorious invention, and I’ve found that certain uncommon or version-specific creatures make for excellent bargaining chips. I have duplicates of all three starters thanks to my mad scheme to breed Combees and Heracrosses, for instance.
I do feel a little guilty about the breeding thing, honestly. Someone sends me a level 1 Piplup and the first thing I do is send it to the mating farm to start churning out babies. You hear complaints that the game encourages cockfighting, sure, but the “child sex trafficking” aspect is, in my opinion, far more vile. Nintendo, what values are you teaching our children?
One of the forum regulars compared Pokémon to Animal Crossing, a comparison that had been lurking somewhere in the bowels of my mind. More to the point, the two games share some common principles — making Pokémon a sort of compressed take on some of Animal Crossing’s mechanics. There’s lots of side crap to keep you distracted, lots of daily things to juggle (the Berry Master, for example), lots of social trading, lots of things to collect obsessively. And then when you get bored of all of that you can mosey back onto the main story track.
Of course, for those who sneer at Pokémon for being repetitive kiddie fluff, there’s this week’s Retronauts. It’s about Diablo. Which is built on a similar kind of repetition feeding obsessive-compulsion, except with devil motifs, so therefore way more mature. Or whatever.