Monday, November 20, 2017

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

As this review's been nearly six years in the making, it's only fair I cut to the chase: I still intend to bury The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. Admittedly, I embark on this task with some trepidation: it is not a game that is outright terrible, as I have implied in the past. This is not the so-called sorcery of the previously-discussed Zelda Cycle; a carefully-evaluated 100% run does reveal it is a professionally-designed title with your typical Nintendo polish and all that, and like Twilight Princess before it, there are some good moments I dare not wish to minimize.

That does not, unfortunately, dissuade me from believing Skyward Sword is possibly the most underwhelming output from Nintendo's own studios in their entire history of game development. This is not to say it is the worst -- Donkey Kong Jr. Math and Urban Champion have endured three decades of mud-slinging for a reason -- and this excludes second-party efforts and third-party collaborations (Metroid: Other M, being worse in every way that matters, would obviously be the runaway winner).

Friday, November 17, 2017

On Leave Luck to Heaven's Future, Twitter, and Hey Poor Player

Hello. Given the lack of reviews and whatnot for Leave Luck to Heaven, it's time I shared my upcoming plans for the blog, so you'd better sit down.

While much of the recent drama has come and past, the blog has fallen to the wayside as Hey Poor Player and my real-life job have taken priority. This has induced some heavy guilt upon me, although it's hardly a new feeling: for years now, I've struggled to maintain a consistent output, all the while deadlines were missed and numerous announced projects and plans never came to be. This isn't the first time I've had this discussion, either, so for readers who have been frustrated with my droughts and broken promises, all I can say is that I truly am sorry.

Over the past several months, I've done some deep introspection over my writing habits and came to realize my evolution with writing: you know how waaaay back when I first started, I felt it necessary to write numerous posts just for one game? As Leave Luck to Heaven started out as an experimental platform, I felt that direction was necessary to establish my unique, but I came to recognize a year later that was far too excessive and time-consuming. Since then, my singular reviews have gradually evolved not just beyond syntax and grammatical improvements: reviews are no longer book-sized, and I've since done away with embedding game music via YouTube.

Upon reflecting on all that, I've come to the conclusion that if I truly desire a consistent schedule, then I'll have to make concessions with my key writing habit -- that is to say, review sizes will now be firmly within 1500-2000 word territory. Having spent the past two months trying to get my next Nintendo review out, it's become evident I can no longer sustain this gargantuan model anymore. Hammering this point is how I have way too many games lined up for review, and I cannot afford to write 3000+ word essays for them all.

At the same time, though, I understand it's my wordy prose that's a huge appeal of Leave Luck to Heaven, and so I'd like to reiterate this is not to say extra-meaty reviews are gone for good. I may be willing to stretch to 2500+ words for certain games, but I'll probably only reserve that for games I deem especially worthy of such deep analysis (off the top of my head, only The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and most of the Super Smash Bros. games come to mind). I'd like to also mention that 2000 words won't be a strict limit; if a review just happens to surpass that with 2150 or so, then, well, that happens.

Regardless, a monthly four Nintendo/two Worldly Weekend review model is still my goal, and adjustments are already being made to accommodate this process: games will no longer be subject to 100% completion before reviewing, for instance, so as to quicken the process for review (bear in mind this was only applied for Nintendo games).  Meanwhile, I must also announce Biweekly Music Wednesday! will be going on hiatus until I maintain an acceptable review output. While disappointing, that column has admittedly been interfering with said output, so I'll definitely bring it back once things are steady.

In the meantime, I'd also like to announce my final decision regarding Twitter. After much going back-and-forth on the matter, I've decided to remain on the platform. While not an easy decision, like the rest of social media Twitter is simply far too intertwined with interaction and my profession to simply chuck away, so barring any public statements condoning the racists/bigots on the platform, it looks like I'm here to stay. However, in exchange, I will certainly be active in voicing my displeasure with said bigotry, and I'd like to call upon you to do the same.

Finally, I'd like to announce an exciting development with Hey Poor Player: starting next month, I will be reviewing manga! Those who follow the site have noticed we've covered movies and Netflix shows and the like, and as a huge consumer of manga, I figured that wouldn't be a stranger to the lineup! Having read manga for thirteen years, it's only natural I'd want to discuss my second favorite medium. We're still working out the details, but I'm aiming for two reviews per month, and I'll be beginning with the first volumes for Astra Lost in Space and The Promised Neverland, both fantastic series I've been following on Viz's Shonen Jump subscription. I've already been studying manga reviews, so needless to say, I'm quite excited!

Anyway, that's all I have to share. My next review is finally wrapping up, so I may be seeing you shortly. "Till then!

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Cat Quest Review (Hey Poor Player)

What, you didn't think I was gonna play this?!? Hardly one of my longer reviews, but perhaps the short length complements the game?

Anyway, please stay tuned for an important post tomorrow detailing Leave Luck to Heaven's immediate future, as well as my decision regarding Twitter. Also, some fun news regarding Hey Poor Player!

On Mario Odyssey's Photo Mode And Its Expression of Freedom (Hey Poor Player)


A bit late posting this up, but here's something I wrote about Super Mario Odyssey's wondrous Photo Mode? Why did I use such a dreary-looking pic for the header? Only one way to find out!

A game review for Switch will also be up on Hey Poor Player today, so look forward to that, too.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Checking In + Review Updates

Look at me, I'm a mess! I said tomorrow and I ended up posting this four days later. Unfortunately, I had some bad allergies and been lacking stamina, so we'll chalk it up to that and move on.

As far as good news goes, my cousin's wife is now cancer-free and on the road to recovery, although we did have an unexpected bump when we had to put down my dog not even two days before her operation. We've been prepared since he'd been growing deaf all year, but it's not like you can predict a stroke, sadly. I've been going through some drama lately, haven't I?

As far as the blog goes, I'd like to announce that I'll be going back to certain reviews and making grammatical/spelling updates. Most changes (and there won't be many) will be minuscule alterations, although my Sonic the Hedgehog review will include something I can't believe I forgot to mention. This is why review notes are important!

Speaking of reviews, I've been making strides in my review schedules and balancing that with personal game time. I'd rather go into detail in case it falls through (again..), but if it goes well, I may share some insight on the process!

Anyway, I'll be seeing y'all soon.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Fire Emblem Warriors Review (Hey Poor Player)

Woops! I was so distracted by the drama from last week that I forgot to put this up here! In case you didn't know, I think it's been up for nearly a week now, ahaha.

Anyway, I'll be providing a quick update tomorrow, so stay tuned for that.