Just so everyone knows ahead of time, I'm going to be away next weekend (Fri – Sun) so there won't be a Week in Review, or probably as many news stories on Fri and Sat. Arnold might do a few, but I figured I'd tell you now.

The RPGs are everywhere!

It's both good and bad. It's good because I always like to give most RPGs a try, even if I don't have anywhere near as much time as I used to have. But it's bad because it's hard to get reviews done for all of them. Obviously, we've already done Final Fantasy XIII because that topped the priority list, but Last Rebellion , Star Ocean: The Last Hope International and Resonance of Fate all need analysis, which is going to prove problematic. However, that being said, I will have reviews done for Last Rebellion and Star Ocean within the next week or so. …it's part of the reason why I'll need a break next weekend. 😉 Looking down the road, I was interested to read about the new improvements and additions for White Knight Chronicles 2 , and I was also psyched to hear about the map and airship in Final Fantasy Versus XIII . I'm not naive to hope for turn-based but I'll certainly hope for a great game.

I have to find a way to get my hands on Resonance of Fate , which could be tough. Sega's PR is useless and it might be a long wait if it has to come from GameFly. But this is annoying because I've been wanting to try it ever since I heard it announced; it appears to be pretty entertaining, and it might contain more of the traditional RPG elements I've been missing in FFXIII. Well, I'll get to it, at any rate.

L.A. Noire gets more intriguing by the minute

At first, I wasn't sure if Team Bondi's project would be like a cross between Grand Theft Auto and Mafia , which would be great, but I think the real explanation is better: it almost sounds like the idea of the interactive drama with the inclusion of third-person action and exploration. I'm sure it won't be quite as emotionally involving – I don't see L.A. Noire being quite as character driven, nor do I see it boasting as good of a branching storyline – but I love the idea of being a detective in 1947 Los Angeles. There's so much authenticity due to the real-life crimes they snatched directly from the LA Times headlines from that year, and they say there are multiple options for the gamer. Now, I don't know if we'll get the innovative "no Game Over" concept, in that if we fail to solve a crime, things just continue along. But either way, I'm definitely hoping to see L.A. Noire on store shelves in September, as they're currently predicting.

Personal gaming update

I've been busy so I haven't been able to put quite as big a dent in FFXIII as I would've liked; I'm only about 26 hours in. I just beat that big dude on the ship (the guy who used Destrudo); I actually beat him on my first try and I completely forgot to summon Odin. But I do go out of my way to beat everything I see when running around, and sometimes I fight a lot of battles over and over. It's the way I've always done RPGs; I like to stay one step ahead of the plot challenges. I've also decided on a final team of Lightning, Fang and Hope. In looking at the character FAQ and going into a lot of threads dealing with this topic, this appears to be the most popular and most effective party. Hope has the highest magic stat, Lighting is the best overall Commando/Ravager, and Fang is actually better than Snow as both a Ravager and Commando, although it's debatable in terms of the Sentinel skill. Fang also gets Saboteur and Hope gets Synergist, so all six Classes are represented with a Light/Fang/Hope party. Sazh appears weak to me and Vanille is good (high Magic stat, great Saboteur), but I'd rather have Hope.

After I finish, I obviously have to play GoWIII. After that, it's break time, although I will play the aforementioned RPGs for reviewing purposes. I'd also like to thank those of you who participated in my little survey and answered my question; I've already received around 25 responses and the vast majority of them are very encouraging. But again, if you know what that question was about, I have to ask that you keep it to yourself. At least for now. Thanks again. 🙂

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rogers71
rogers71
10 years ago

Ben,
I kept getting your emails for the survey question but they were blank. Oh well. As far as next weekend…what am I going to do if you aren't posting for 3 whole days?

Guess I will have to go outside and enjoy the nice weather (hopefully)

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

I don't know what that is. Some other people complained of the same thing…I don't think I can copy and paste from Word into that e-mail account, for some reason.

If you send me another e-mail, I'll just write the question in there. Sorry about that.

frylock25
frylock25
10 years ago

i am still playin the hell out of bioshock 2. im not going very fast and im looking at everything. i cant wait to see how this game ends. once i get the kid to sleep i think i will play it somemore.

played some more burnout paradise, i love that game.

i almost went out about 1230 last night to go to walmart and buy heavy rain. i want to play it so damn bad. keep tellin myself i need to finish what im playin first.

OtisFeelgood
OtisFeelgood
10 years ago

Heavy Rain is awesome. You're going to love it.

Milonakis
Milonakis
10 years ago

Order it on amazon. Then you don't have to waste time going out to get it and you'll likely be bored with racing and bioshock 2 by then.

Condemnedsoul23
Condemnedsoul23
10 years ago

Heavy Rain is an incredible game but to be honest it might be better as a rental instead of a purchase. Don't get me wrong the game is great but I rented it for 5 days and it was played so much we were able to see 3 of the 4 different endings in that amount of time. Now obviously if you just casually play it will take some time but if you get sucked in the way we did you will finish it pretty fast and then immediately want to play again so I say rent it for about $10.00 and save yourself the extra $50.00 to use for soemthing like God of WAR 3 or Final Fantasy 13 or any of the other amazing games out that require more than a weekend to complete.

DeathOfChaos
DeathOfChaos
10 years ago

@Condemnedsoul23
Well, the game has WAY more endings than just 4, lol. And there are so many more things you can do in the time of a rental. Getting 3 endings is just getting to the end of the game and then letting certain people die at certain parts.

Beamboom
Beamboom
10 years ago

I love burnout paradise and bioshock too. And since we seem to share taste in games I'll second CondemnedSoul, rent it first. I've got Heavy Rain and while it is definitely different and worth experiencing it's *very* interactive movie – and a long movie too. To illustrate without spoiling anything: One of the "challenges" (if it can be called that) during the game is to tie the knot on your boss' tie, all done by a complicated chain of keypresses. Others include placing plates on a table slow enough not to break them. Or changing diapers on a baby. And these are not just exceptions. I'm sure things will heat up eventually, but this ain't CSI to put it that way.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
10 years ago

Rogers71,

Wow, at least you got a blank email.

Hell, I didn't even get picked in the beta for the survey question. LOL


Last edited by BikerSaint on 3/20/2010 10:29:02 PM

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

Send me another e-mail. Could've had the same issue as Rogers. Don't worry, I'll get you the question. 🙂

SnipeySnake
SnipeySnake
10 years ago

I'm stuck at the last summon in FFXIII. The second last one was the first boss i've ever actually beaten in one try. I was so hoping it would be that easy with the last summon too but….dang its the opposite.

johnld
johnld
10 years ago

if you're talking about vanilles eidolon, i suggest fang as a sentinel and vanille as sabotour. just do auto battle, it just gets pretty irritating after 5 stupid eidolon battles.

NeoHumpty
NeoHumpty
10 years ago

I had to level up a bit because I rushed through the last level or so trying to advance the story. After that it was all about using Fang as Sentinel.

SnipeySnake
SnipeySnake
10 years ago

Yeah i kinda figured that out on my own but thanks anyway. I used Fang as a Sentinel and Vanille as a Saboteur and i just used Deshell and Deprotect, then just kept using imperial, when fang had low health or dies, i just switch vanille into a medic, then use cure and raise. I still had trouble so i had to use a buff item before the battle.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
10 years ago

Oh, OK Ben,
When I received the email saying "thanks for volunteering" with the whole page blank right under it, I just though I had failed my American Idol audition, LMAO

Will do a re-do there, Simon Cowel 🙂

johnld
johnld
10 years ago

i have resonance of fate sitting on my shelf and i know its not going to be played for a while. I'm still going with FF13 for now, then theres MAG double xp stuff next week, bad company 2 platinum hunt, trying to get back to white knight chronicles. Not to mention i still have heavy rain and the entire god of war series to play.

Theres one thing i hate about the second part of ff13 though. It is almost crucial to have at least 1 sentinel in your party at all times in order to survive battles. Hell, i have my 3 members up to level 4 role levels, i still get beat down quite a bit.

Milonakis
Milonakis
10 years ago

My brother left with the ps3 for the weekend, the thing that pisses me off is I have God of War 3 to play since I just started it before he left, and I haven't even touched Demon's Souls which I just got too. That jerk.

Gamer Girl Gemo
Gamer Girl Gemo
10 years ago

As some have said before, I slightly envy you Ben for being able to play all these games and review them and call it a job. It sounds awesome from my, and others', perspectives, but in reality it would make the appreciation and fun be taken out of gaming. Don't get me wrong, it would be awesome for a while. But, it would begin to get dull after the 50th game and review. You do an amazing job of it, however Ben, and we all enjoy your critique. At least, I know I do. It gives me the dos and don'ts of the gaming industry.
The same goes for me on the RPGs. I've been behind, which saddens me because everyone talks about the latest RPGs and here I am with yesterday's talk. For example, I'm currently in the middle of WKC and it is dragging… But, in a good sort of way dragging. Before that, I finished DA:OA with 6 hours then I tried my hand at AVP. I only played the Alien's storyline and just gave up. It was fun, but a little pointless to the overall standing.
I'm expecting to try and play FFXIII sometime in the future… Just as soon as it's available to rent at Blockbuster. I'm not really going to try hard to look for it, but I will get it if it's there. No biggy.
Anywho, my rambling is over with. We'll miss you next weekend Ben! Have a good break 🙂

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

Thank you. And yes, I have found that reviewing so many games has dulled things a bit for me, but thankfully, it only seems to happen if it's related to work. For games I really want to play, that love is still there. 🙂

But as I always say, reviewing is only like 15% of this job. News, previews, features, maintaining the Comments and forums, uploading screens and videos, sending newsletters, etc…that's the majority of it. And not all of that is always fun. It's a job, like anything else…not that I'm complaining. 😉

Gamer Girl Gemo
Gamer Girl Gemo
10 years ago

@Ben

You're welcome 😀 I can imagine how much hard work it is to maintain this site. Luckily, the majority of the readers here are civilized and don't cause much trouble in the forums or comments. Whenever something goes wrong, Ben to the rescue, eh? 🙂
Anywho, more praise for this site continues, ever since I found this site I've been more update with new releases and what's going on with the systems. Which I applaud you immensely for all the hard work that is put into the reviews, news, etc. Anyway, before I begin to creep you out with all the praise, I just wanted to say that I someday want to become a reviewer for video games and the reviews put forth here are just great influences and models to look up to. I hope that someday I'll be able to have my own site or maybe even my own column in GameInformer?
Oh, I'm babbling again lol.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

We all need goals. If we can help you along in any way, we're flattered.

tlpn99
tlpn99
10 years ago

Ben I have put aside FF13 for God Of War 3 im sorry dont shoot me but I will go back after I have done GOW 3 I promise.

My mate is playing it so I am determined to catch him up( he is about 8 hours in and I am about 5 hours in) I may try to balance the 2 games but it is hard as we both play in the same clan online with one another so when were not doing that were catching up on our single player games to compare etc. lol

I_defenestrate
I_defenestrate
10 years ago

Don't feel bad, I did the same thing with Yakuza 3 and God of War 3. I even played a couple hours of Resonance of Fate just to see if I wanted to purchase it. I figure it's going to be a hard to find game soon, so I wanted to grab it before it vaporized. I can now say that I'm back to FFXIII and shouldn't be playing anything else until it is finished.

Shams
Shams
10 years ago

Just beat GOW3 last night on titan mode (approx. 20 hours). I can't praise the game enough on how it defied my expectations. The ending was quite long, so I don't understand the complaints about it, and can't imagine how drawn out it would've been if the uncut material had been included. And for the complaints about the game length, I won't know until I've played through it on easy or normal. But, then again, that's why I beat it first on Titan. The Titan mode was difficult, more so than I expected, but not like "Radec-on-Veteran", broken, difficult. I can't imagine how difficult Chaos Mode is. But, I'm figuring that's why they didn't even make it a requirement for the platinum trophy.

Also, it is the first GOW3 that I immediately wanted to play again, after beating it. And that's the case even though I interrupted my play-through of Mass Effect 2.

So Ben, I'm impressed with your patience. I also think though it has to do with you having played and reviewed Dante's Inferno: like me, I'm sure you don't like playing the same kind of game back-to-back. But, allow me to suggest you this: Yes, they are of the same genre, but what GOW3 does, no game has done before it, or not nearly as well. Not even SOC. How Santa Monica pulled this off in only two years is just beyond me. But I'll say this. This game has been in the making for the past 7 years. It shows, and I'm sure David Jaffe, Corey Barlog, and Stig Asmussen can agree to that.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

Oh, don't worry. I'm absolutely convinced I'll adore GoWIII. No worries there. 🙂

Shams
Shams
10 years ago

Savin the best for last, yes?

FxTales
FxTales
10 years ago

There's only one game that I have scheduled enough time to play in my break and that's Heavy Rain. God of War 3 and FFXIII can wait. . .till I can afford them.

Riku994
Riku994
10 years ago

I had fun doing the survey question, I felt like I was in english class only I enjoyed it.

darxed
darxed
10 years ago

Yeah I felt the same, especially since English is not my first language, je je je…

Alienange
Alienange
10 years ago

There seems to be a lot of things useless about Sega these days. Kinda sad about that.

In case I forget, enjoy your long weekend.

Hitch
Hitch
10 years ago

Ben NO Play God of War 3 NOOOOOOOWWWWWWW!!!!!!

Bromus398
Bromus398
10 years ago

Lightning, Fang and Hope are pretty much the only team you need for the game. I pretty much abandoned everyone else once i could choose my own teams

___________
___________
10 years ago

im really worried for LA Noire and team bondi for that matter.
LA Noire is THE biggest budget 2K has ever spent on a game, EVER!
now think about that for a second, thats quite impressive when you think about it because well 2K are not exactly the stingy ones.
look at GTAIV, that cost a whole basket!
now what happens if it fails?
there are barley any developers here in oz so i would hate to see another one go the way of the dinosaur.

theve maid some big claims but than it is 2K were talking about, they have a mouth to put dan greenwalt to shame!
makes you wonder whos talking crap?
on one hand you have some developers saying its been a extremley rocky ride, and development really has never hit its stride and its been rushed and stitched together.
thats not exactly the procedure to making a AAA title.

than on the other hand you have R* and 2K making all these bold promises, so which one do you believe?

the one who is working on the game, and has spent the last 4+ years sleeping with it and has no reason to lie.
or the company who would see the game once in a blue moon, and has absolutely every reason in the world to lie.

guess only time will tell, i really do hope LA Noire live up to expectations and fill the massive boots 2K have given it.
but sadly i can not see that happening.
maybe team bondis eyes are bigger than their stomach.
it sounds like to me they took more than what they could handle, hence the million delays and well absolutely no info to go off.

LittleBigMidget
LittleBigMidget
10 years ago

God of War III is just EPIC.Epic x1,000000000,00000000000,000000000000. Anyway, as I took a break from GOW3, I poped in LBP for the first time in months. As I played LBP, I thought, "wouldn't it be cool if we had a Play, Create, Share RPG?" Imagine that, creating your own swords, your own magic, your own creatures/enemies., creating your own quests ect.

Alienange
Alienange
10 years ago

Shame on you for taking a break from GOWIII.

SnipeySnake
SnipeySnake
10 years ago

I use rpg maker vx, im working on a game myself.

wakkaoaka
wakkaoaka
10 years ago

Bah that destructo killed me too easily, but i fixed up my paradigms to take advantage of that magic boosting thingy and got sazh to haste me up. I used a shroud to keep me nice and chunky, then after destructo hit i would use two healers so i could quickly get back to button mashing the boss's head in.

And i keep on pressing L3 to switch to turn based mode… But to no avail.

Oyashiro
Oyashiro
10 years ago

I've been playing Resonance of Fate and I have to say I was enjoying FFXIII, But this just so much more fun.

World map, interesting steam punk story, towns, exploration, npc, side quests, battle arena, weapon and character customization, item crafting, very lovable main characters, fantastic battle system.

Tri-ace has been pretty down this generation but this seem like they looked back at there ps2 games and molded it after Valkire Profile and Radiata Stories.

FullmetalX10
FullmetalX10
10 years ago

Guess I'll just have to play God of War III and study next weekend, if those two even go hand in hand.

I'm really hoping for Versus XIII to hit us sometime next year, just can't wait for that, as long as it doesn't get scrwd up in any way. It just has to be the biggest most awesome, fancy looking Final Fantasy EVAR, even though it probably won't have a turn based battle system.

I just get amazed sometimes at how good God of War III looks especially Kratos, it looks as if he'd just pop his head out of your screen and yell something agressive at you.

Anyways, glad I could've helped with the personal survey thing 😉

JackC8
JackC8
10 years ago

I downloaded the new patch for Need For Speed Shift. It seems to have fixed the problem with slowdown during some races. Of course it introduced some new problems – I didn't quit playing last night because I was finished, but because the game locked the whole system up and the only option was to turn my PS3 off. One of the races had no sound – had to exit and re-enter. One of the races was freezing up, had to exit and re-enter. Sigh… Also got the exotic car DLC for it. It's pretty cool, love some of the new cars and you get a whole new tier of races as well as a new track.

Played a little bit of Tomb Raider Underworld. I just don't get that game. It's perfectly obvious what you're supposed to do, but how to do it? It's trial and error until you happen upon the thing that the developers had in mind. Not exactly fun.


Last edited by JackC8 on 3/21/2010 6:53:34 AM

Geobaldi
Geobaldi
10 years ago

Speaking of Need for Speed. I'm waiting to see if I get my beta invite for the new Need for Speed World game that's coming out later this year.

tes37
tes37
10 years ago

I've been playing both FFXIII and GOW3. I made it to Gran Pulse so I'll be spending a little more time with GOW. I plan on being in Gran Pulse for a while trying to knock out those missions.

I'm using the pre-order bribes from Amazon for GOW and FF to reduce the price of Resonance of Fate. Like I_defenestrate stated to tlpn99 above, I too believe RoF could be hard to find if I wait too long. So I'm ordering it today and will open it up and play after I'm finished with FFXIII.

I hope you have fun on your break next weekend Ben. I read the articles everyday even though I don't always comment, so your absence will definitely be noticed. Maybe we'll look at it like a reading break.

psxmax
psxmax
10 years ago

Ben, you never mention "John Shepard" or make any acknowledgment of his existence. One can only conclude that he is an alias between you and Arnold. What is his story? Is he the "Stig" of PSXE?

frylock25
frylock25
10 years ago

shhhh, its like santa and the easter bunny

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
10 years ago

Um…yes?

rell
rell
10 years ago

Resonance of fate is awesome its different, Sega need too advertise there games more. Playb3yond

BeezleDrop
BeezleDrop
10 years ago

@ Oyshiro,

Oh! You bought Resonance of Fate? Is it worth the purchase? I am pretty interested in it but cannot find any reviews. I hear it is fun but not for everyone. They say the battle system is deep and complex. What are your thoughts on the game?

Oyashiro
Oyashiro
10 years ago

I'm enjoying it very much so. Everything they did in the game just fits so well together. The only complaint i could think of is that the story starts off slow, but even that is not that much of an issue as the escapades that your party goes on in the beginning are so funny that i honestly wouldn't care if the entire game was like that.

The more I am playing this the more I'm loving it. Need i keep saying that the battle system is awesome. XD

I_defenestrate
I_defenestrate
10 years ago

Yeah, the little bit I played of it made me laugh a few times. Soon as I'm done with XIII I'm going back to it.

piratedrunk
piratedrunk
10 years ago

On top of the battle system being awesome I have to say the music in this game is probably the best I've heard in years.