Copyright Adam Schlosser

Copyright 2005 Adam Schlosser

Posted by Pip

R2A11- Tag

The Envies learn that their size and strength is outmatched by an agile, twisty guy! Of course, when they DO get a hand on him, they can break his bits into smaller pieces. But what kind of villain would this dude be if he couldn't suck up those busted pieces? There's just something that's so fun about a character that can swap out its limbs.

This week on Mercynaries, the moment the Mercs have been waiting for! Ruth finally figures out how to stick all that hair into a bun! Wait, no, they get some important news. Dramatic news! Vote for Sins on TWC to get this week's page for free or contribute to the site to get the month's!

Quick Review: Animal Crossing: New Leaf- My thoughts on Animal Crossing are that much like games like Harvest Moon, they feel more like a chore or obligation than a game. We'll get into that, but right off the bat, I have to say that AC is zen as heck. The nighttime music is some of the most soothing do nothing music in a modern game. 7 PM for life!
Even having played the previous DS AC, the opening is surprisingly confusing. It doesn't tell you the controls or really anything to do, but there are actually specific steps you have to take. It's kind of refreshing to not be beaten over the head by a tutorial, but for such a kid-friendly series, they give you just enough rope to hang yourself with if you're really trying to get into the game. Being forced to wait on your first day is also a major bummer. You get enough money to build your starter house and then there isn't much you can do until the next day, so it's kind of a warning from the start that AC isn't really a game you play, it's just something you co-exist with.
The equipment/inventory management bothers me and sucks out a lot of the game's fun. There should be specific inventory slots devoted to the core equipment so it's not mixed in with your stuff to sell. Even if they did that, your pockets fill up extremely quickly so there's a lot of running back and forth from a spot to the shop and then back. I can understand WHY they don't allow it, but the ability to just sell all your junk without having to dash over to the shops would make the game so much more interesting. The timing/spacing on catching bugs is too strict and they can occasionally sense you from half a screen away even if you're sneaking and there's just too much randomness in fishing. Catching sea bass over and over and over when you've never caught a marlin just makes it annoying. A little randomness is fine, but if AC is all about being a peaceful moment of reflection, it gets super frustrating and it gets there quickly. Knowing that some fish are only out when I'm at work or that they're only available at certain months just gets me to a point where I accept that I'm never going to complete ANY of the collections and I just skip all of it.
The mayoral stuff is the game's new big draw but it's ultimately a let down since there just isn't enough to do. It takes a week to do something new or to open a new shop so you don't get a chance to flex your city management skills. At the very least, you should be able to hire townsfolk to do the menial tasks. I hate taking care of flowers in AC. It's boring, repetitive, tedious, banal, and other good synonyms so I never do it. If I could just pay one of the townsfolk that seemingly do nothing and contribute nothing to society, I could bypass a lousy part of the game and enjoy everything more. The lack of time options for people that don't have access to the game 24 hours a day could also have been taken care of through the mayoral system. I can play on the train in the morning before all the shops have opened or at night when I get home when the shops are almost closed. You can decree that shops stay open late but it takes days to get that option and then they just open later too. Your job as mayor really just means that you have to pay for all the town upgrades and you get to pick where you build benches.
Your end game is just finding an easy way to make bells, grinding them out, and trying to figure out your personal point where it all stops being interesting. Animal Crossing always starts out fun, then I get stressed out by all of the time dictated events and start making lists of when bugs or fish are available, realize I'm not going to stick with the game long enough to catch everything so I abandon that, then just focus on making Bells to upgrade my house and now expand the town, and ultimately question why I'm doing any of this and a new game I'm interested in will come out and I'll abandon AC. I'm all for the idea of Animal Crossing, but the lack of gameplay, the time issues, and the lack of interesting mayoral options just don't make it worth sticking with and if you're not going to stick with the game, there's no point in paying for the game.