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Nintendo Switch

118 posts in this topic

17 hours ago, The Bear said:

The console looks neat but unfinished.  It's laughable that simply pointing out the price of additional items is seen as making a mountain out of a molehill though.

The argument I keep hearing is "if you're planning on spending $300 anyway whats the big deal for another $50/60+, etc." which is the STUPIDEST counter argument to that.

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Here is my early assessment. The Switch is packaged well and easy to set up. The base menu is intuitive. Sliding out the JoyCons is not as easy as it looks on the commercial, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The AC adapter for the base can also be used on it in the portable mode so you don't need to buy an extra one. It runs smoothly enough and doesn't seem to have any hiccups outside a launch day. The Switch is a lot smaller than I imagined and that's okay because it's really light. Haven't got to play Zelda yet because I have this BS thing called a job but my wife is loving it along with the ability to run and hide with it and play a game without disrupting the TV and whoever is already on it. 

Extras are a bit expensive though it doesn't bother me as much as it will others. Now to wait patiently for Puyo Puyo Tetris, Mario Kart, Mario, Splatoon 2 and Fire Emblem Heroes. 

I should also point out that everything I bought, including a carrying case, seems to be a much higher quality than I'm used to on other consoles. The Switch is sturdy and solid, the JoyCons use metal slides and not plastic slides and the Pro Controller I bought seems to be made from Nintendonite which for me is a fair argument for the prices. 

I should also note that I may never get to play it as my wife has claimed it as her own personal console. 

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After prying the damn thing from my wife's cold dead corpse, I was finally able to get some time in on Zelda. I was hoping for the adult Zelda game I've been waiting for. Where it takes a serious story and actually does it justice. I was hoping that I wouldn't end up with another joke like Twilight Princess. I was hoping since it boasted being an open world game I would have an expansive world with a near infinite amount of stuff to do like in Wind Waker. That however is not what I got... I got so much more than my expectation. 

The game is fluid whether you're playing on TV or handheld. The world is much larger than I expected and despite my suspicions of forced linear play, once you get past the beginning part where it's teaching you the basics (which can take a bit), it opens up. This iteration of Zelda is by far a much better game than Twilight Princess and Skyward Sword combined and I would dare say that you might be able to throw in two or more Zelda games into that equation and it may very well still hold true. 

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(warning, huge text dump incoming)

 

Alright, where to start:

The beginning: So I ended up preordering the system and the smaller of the two special editions for BotW.  The System was set for pickup at Best Buy and the game for release day delivery by UPS.  I took Friday off for a few reasons; be able to sleep after midnight release, Dentist appointment, and to try out the system.  I wandered over to Best Buy around 8:30 or 9pm, there was about 40 people waiting there, I squatted in line.  around 9:30 or 10 the employees made their way through the line, handing out fliers with all the available items to people, as a way of counting how many people were there and capping if they ran out of systems.  Come to find out, I was actually in the "buying now line" and I needed to be in the "preorder pickup line", which just ended up being at the from of my current line on the OTHER side of the stantions.  Which meant I was 2nd in line for preorder pickup.  At 11pm they started letting us in to pay.  Preorder folks got to go in first, which meant we also got first crack at all the peripherals for sale.  They had all the launch titles, all the new LoZ Amiibos, spare joycons, procons and a couple of standard micro-SD cards.  I ended up grabbing a 64gb SD as well as the 4 smaller Amiibo (I'll get the guardian eventually, as I collect the LoZ Amiibos, but I felt the need to hold back a LITTLE at least.).  Once I paid and got my receipt I wandered across to a gas station for a restroom trip and to grab something to drink.  I got back around 11:30 and stood there reading until midnight.  At that point they started looking at receipts and bringing out the bags of stuff.  I got mine and headed to my card, noting the clock at 12:08am.  Super streamlined, kudos to best buy. (though I did feel bad for the guy who showed up to pick up his preorder at 12:05 and had to go to the back of the processing line, which still included about 20-30 "new purchase" people)

Friday: After getting some sleep I woke up and began tearing into the system.  Trying out the joycons, looking at the setup and eventually getting it hooked up to my wifi.  that took a while, because it wouldn't recognize my router.  After a bit of tweeking and changing my router settings everything fell into place.  I was able to get online and download the "F-zero that's not F-zero" game and play a few races before having to head to a 10:40am showing of Logan (highly recommend see it)  After that I really didn't have any time to dawdle before my 2pm dentist appointment.  After nearly 2 hours of jamming a temp crown onto my back left upper molar I was FINALLY free to do what I wanted with no other commitments (and a free evening of the wife being out to do stage manager work for a play).  I checked my account and notice a nice little bonus from my paycheck being deposited so I decided to splurge and go pick up spare set of Joycons and another game that was getting good press, Bomberman.  I wandered back home and pulled the system back out.  My copy of BotW came in, so I looked through the contents of the pack.  Aside from the game I got a paper poster map of Hyrule, collectible coin, 24-song CD soundtrack and the "Shiekah Slate" carrying case.  The case is great quality and holds the system(screen and joycons, but not the dock), up to 30 or more games and has a pouch for accessories (extra joycons w/ top sliders, memory cards and such, not big enough for procons or other large accessories).

 

Since then I've been steadily going through BotW and playing a bit of Bomberman on the side.  Here are some opinions and stats for those who may be on the fence:

Financials: "What do I need to be able to play" - So a big point has been made "what do I need to buy to play".  Out of the box, the system has no games, which is nothing new for modern consoles.  It comes with a pair of Joycons, as well as a controller dock that combines them into one large controller as well as 2 top docks which allows each joycon to act as a small controller with one joystick plus standard ABXYLR buttons.  This allows up to 2 players to play on most games.  Depending on the game and the system setup you can pair more joycons to the system to run more players.  For instance, running on the portable screen and individual joycons you can have up to 4 people playing bomberman, but if docked to a television you can run up to EIGHT players on one system.  I haven't delved into the memory issue, I just dropped my 64gb card into the system ($20) and went with it.  So if we assume 2 players on one system, with at least one game to play and a memory card you're looking at about a $400 investment.  From there you can customize to your taste.

The system: So my initial thoughts have been "I don't care about the handheld aspects, I'm just going to be playing it at home" and I couldn't have been more wrong.  I spent the past weekend at a large managers meeting for a convention and between sessions and during meal breaks there were no less than 20 of us out in the lobby or at our tables playing the switch. (the higher ups even gave one away as a free raffle)  I brought my dock with me to hook up to the hotel room TV, but overall I played it in whatever room I could.  I played with the joycons docked, like a large handheld, I played with the screen on the table and a joycon in each hand, really comfortable and intuitive in any configuration.  One thing to note, the system will ONLY work in the dock, showing on the TV, if it is plugged into an AC adapter.  I tried to just hook up the dock with the HDMI cable and no dice, it needs the power source to power the transfer and the enhanced output.  (I was being lazy and didn't want to reconfigure my surge protector for the new plug)  I will say, I haven't tried the portable mode with multiple players yet.  Many games have local IR play for multiple systems, but I am a bit worried about up to 4 players trying to share the small screen, so no info on that yet.

The Games: Yeah, not much to do at launch aside from a few titles.  Here is what is currently available:

*BotW – Flagship title, more below.

*Bomberman – A fun title in the series.  I have very limited experience with this series, but I’m enjoying this a lot.  It brings together what seems to be a sentai team of Bomberman siblings, each with their own characteristics that are fighting against an evil organization.  The storymode is fun to watch and plays like any other bomberman puzzle mode.  The voice acting and writing is hilarious, they seem to have had a lot of fun with it.  Multiplayer seems to be a focus and promises good things, but I haven’t tried it yet.

*Skylanders – Not sure how this franchise is still alive….(not my bag)

*1, 2, Switch – Could also be known as “not-Wario Ware”.  The generic “Here’s what this system can do” game, a la Wii Sports.  I didn’t pick it up as I don’t find myself using it much.

*Just Dance 2017 – Everyone knows this one, not my bag.

*Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove and Spectre of Torment – I don’t have any experience with Shovel Knight, but they ranked 2 separate launch titles, might have to check it out.

*I am Setsuna – JRPG, shiny looking, I’ve heard good things

*Snipper Clips – Co-op “here’s what this system can do” game.  I hear it’s fun, may try it later.

*Fast RMX, aka “Not F-Zero” – Generic hovercraft racing game.  Fun times, not much to say.  Low price point is appropriate.

(The latter half of this list is Digital release only)

 

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wilds - So as you all know, this was why I got this system.  I could have gotten it for WiiU, but honestly, who wasn't disappointed with the quality of TP on GC as opposed to Wii?  This is the game I have spent the most time on so far and it has been fantastic.  They promised open world, they promised customization, they promised no hand-holding, they promised much with this game and they delivered all this and more.  here is a brief synopsis of my playtime so far (around 12-20 hours):

Phase 1 - The game starts you in the "great plateau" section where your first directive is to log the map of the region.  You then meet an old man with a glider that will let you visit other regions, but he won't give it to you until you go through the first 4 shiekah shrines. (These shrines litter the landscape and completing their puzzles is your sole source of increasing your heart containers and stamina gauge)  These 4 shrines give you the basic tools which make your sheikah slate an indispensable tool.  After doing this, the old man reveals who he really is and gives you the basic story of the game. (omitted for spoiler sake)

Phase 2 - What to do next?  You must find out how to gather enough power to face Ganon, so a trip to Kakariko village and the sage Impa is in order.  After talking to her you must make your way to Hateno Village and talk to another sage who will unlock the rest of your Shiekah Slate abilities.  After returning to Impa you now have 12 photos in your slate from the time when you first faced Ganon and must return to those places to restore your fractured memories.  The hard thing being, all you have to go on is the picture and NO other guidance. (I found ONE only because it had Hyrule castle as a landmark to guide me)  Your other mission is to find and free the 4 ancient guardian beasts which were tainted by Ganon.  Just this morning I finally reached my first one, in the Zora river. (Note, you can find and free these in any order, I just happened to stumble upon this one first.)

Now this all sounds easy enough, except when you consider I said I've been playing for nearly 2 dozen hours to get to this point, the BAREST of starts.  This has been littered with at least 30-40 "game over you died, continue?" screens from either falling or running into a giant beast before I had the right equipment to handle it.  the game is HARD, but in a good way.  It's challenging.

I've gone through about 16 shrines by now, caught one horse plus got Epona from an Amiibo, picked up a couple various pieces of armor and a lot of varied weapons.  A couple notes:

*Weapons: Your weapons are sorted into melee weapons (swords, sticks, mops, spears, even Bokoblin skeleton arms), bows/Arrows and Shields.  Weapons have a VERY short life-span generally.  Standard clubs, swords and spears will break after just 4-6 enemies (12-15 hits) and bows will break after shooting a dozen or two arrows.  Shields are equally fragile, but not as common to break as there are many 2 handed weapons that don't let you use your shield.  There are upgraded weapons which last longer (about twice as long) but nothing indestructible yet.  I'm guessing there is a weapon lab somewhere, but I haven't found it yet.

Horses: yep, you have to catch and tame horses.  They hang out in certain fields (usually near stables) and if you sneak up behind them and jump on you can calm and tame them gradually.  You are able to hold up to 5 horses in the stable and your horses are available from any stable you find (I've found 2 so far and there are more out there).  The Smash Bros. Link *Amiibo when you first tap it will give you Epona who has max stats and is already tamed if you are too lazy to tame your own.

*Travel: The in-game world is MASSIVE.  Larger than any I've ever seen.  Each different region of Hyrule has a tower where you can download a map of the area.  If you were to walk Link from one end to the other of a single region it would likely take 5-10 minutes of real time.  And so far I've uncover 4 or 5 of these regions with at least that many more to go.  Horses make it MUCH easier to travel, but can't traverse water or sharp inclines.  There is really no where you can't go.  If you find a river you can swim.  If you find a wall or mountain, you can climb.  However climbing to high areas is difficult because it will get colder and if you don't have a torch or insulated clothing you will gradually lose hearts from cold exposure. (in addition, climbing into a fire dungeon with wooden weapons equipped or jumping in a river with a rod that shoots lightning slung on your back is an automatic ticket to a bad time.)  Now considering all towns and major landmarks are considerable distances apart and having to walk or ride between them is RIDICULOUSLY time-consuming, they added in a function on the shiekah slate for transportation.  Link can transport immediately to ANY map tower, Shrine or other place of interest with a transport hub that he has activated.  So when the Sage at Hateno Village says "Go see Impa and then come back and see me", rather than a 30 minute slog across roads and mountains, it's a few seconds to teleport, talk and teleport back.  But, as always, too many short cuts and you'll run out of supplies.  Exploration is still key.

 

So there it is.  As I said, Ijust now got to my first guardian beast and I believe this is also the first true "dungeon" (though it appears it won't be your standard "Find the item, find the big key, fight the boss" dungeon).  I'm really enjoying this so much and am excited to play more.

 

As for the system itself, personally I really like it.  It's comfortable, looks good, plays well, customizes well and honestly, I find myself REALLY interested to find out what else they are going to put on it.  I'm actually anxious to be able to play more titles on it.

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24 minutes ago, Stryyder said:

(warning, huge text dump incoming)

 

Alright, where to start:

The beginning: So I ended up preordering the system and the smaller of the two special editions for BotW.  The System was set for pickup at Best Buy and the game for release day delivery by UPS.  I took Friday off for a few reasons; be able to sleep after midnight release, Dentist appointment, and to try out the system.  I wandered over to Best Buy around 8:30 or 9pm, there was about 40 people waiting there, I squatted in line.  around 9:30 or 10 the employees made their way through the line, handing out fliers with all the available items to people, as a way of counting how many people were there and capping if they ran out of systems.  Come to find out, I was actually in the "buying now line" and I needed to be in the "preorder pickup line", which just ended up being at the from of my current line on the OTHER side of the stantions.  Which meant I was 2nd in line for preorder pickup.  At 11pm they started letting us in to pay.  Preorder folks got to go in first, which meant we also got first crack at all the peripherals for sale.  They had all the launch titles, all the new LoZ Amiibos, spare joycons, procons and a couple of standard micro-SD cards.  I ended up grabbing a 64gb SD as well as the 4 smaller Amiibo (I'll get the guardian eventually, as I collect the LoZ Amiibos, but I felt the need to hold back a LITTLE at least.).  Once I paid and got my receipt I wandered across to a gas station for a restroom trip and to grab something to drink.  I got back around 11:30 and stood there reading until midnight.  At that point they started looking at receipts and bringing out the bags of stuff.  I got mine and headed to my card, noting the clock at 12:08am.  Super streamlined, kudos to best buy. (though I did feel bad for the guy who showed up to pick up his preorder at 12:05 and had to go to the back of the processing line, which still included about 20-30 "new purchase" people)

Friday: After getting some sleep I woke up and began tearing into the system.  Trying out the joycons, looking at the setup and eventually getting it hooked up to my wifi.  that took a while, because it wouldn't recognize my router.  After a bit of tweeking and changing my router settings everything fell into place.  I was able to get online and download the "F-zero that's not F-zero" game and play a few races before having to head to a 10:40am showing of Logan (highly recommend see it)  After that I really didn't have any time to dawdle before my 2pm dentist appointment.  After nearly 2 hours of jamming a temp crown onto my back left upper molar I was FINALLY free to do what I wanted with no other commitments (and a free evening of the wife being out to do stage manager work for a play).  I checked my account and notice a nice little bonus from my paycheck being deposited so I decided to splurge and go pick up spare set of Joycons and another game that was getting good press, Bomberman.  I wandered back home and pulled the system back out.  My copy of BotW came in, so I looked through the contents of the pack.  Aside from the game I got a paper poster map of Hyrule, collectible coin, 24-song CD soundtrack and the "Shiekah Slate" carrying case.  The case is great quality and holds the system(screen and joycons, but not the dock), up to 30 or more games and has a pouch for accessories (extra joycons w/ top sliders, memory cards and such, not big enough for procons or other large accessories).

 

Since then I've been steadily going through BotW and playing a bit of Bomberman on the side.  Here are some opinions and stats for those who may be on the fence:

Financials: "What do I need to be able to play" - So a big point has been made "what do I need to buy to play".  Out of the box, the system has no games, which is nothing new for modern consoles.  It comes with a pair of Joycons, as well as a controller dock that combines them into one large controller as well as 2 top docks which allows each joycon to act as a small controller with one joystick plus standard ABXYLR buttons.  This allows up to 2 players to play on most games.  Depending on the game and the system setup you can pair more joycons to the system to run more players.  For instance, running on the portable screen and individual joycons you can have up to 4 people playing bomberman, but if docked to a television you can run up to EIGHT players on one system.  I haven't delved into the memory issue, I just dropped my 64gb card into the system ($20) and went with it.  So if we assume 2 players on one system, with at least one game to play and a memory card you're looking at about a $400 investment.  From there you can customize to your taste.

The system: So my initial thoughts have been "I don't care about the handheld aspects, I'm just going to be playing it at home" and I couldn't have been more wrong.  I spent the past weekend at a large managers meeting for a convention and between sessions and during meal breaks there were no less than 20 of us out in the lobby or at our tables playing the switch. (the higher ups even gave one away as a free raffle)  I brought my dock with me to hook up to the hotel room TV, but overall I played it in whatever room I could.  I played with the joycons docked, like a large handheld, I played with the screen on the table and a joycon in each hand, really comfortable and intuitive in any configuration.  One thing to note, the system will ONLY work in the dock, showing on the TV, if it is plugged into an AC adapter.  I tried to just hook up the dock with the HDMI cable and no dice, it needs the power source to power the transfer and the enhanced output.  (I was being lazy and didn't want to reconfigure my surge protector for the new plug)  I will say, I haven't tried the portable mode with multiple players yet.  Many games have local IR play for multiple systems, but I am a bit worried about up to 4 players trying to share the small screen, so no info on that yet.

The Games: Yeah, not much to do at launch aside from a few titles.  Here is what is currently available:

*BotW – Flagship title, more below.

*Bomberman – A fun title in the series.  I have very limited experience with this series, but I’m enjoying this a lot.  It brings together what seems to be a sentai team of Bomberman siblings, each with their own characteristics that are fighting against an evil organization.  The storymode is fun to watch and plays like any other bomberman puzzle mode.  The voice acting and writing is hilarious, they seem to have had a lot of fun with it.  Multiplayer seems to be a focus and promises good things, but I haven’t tried it yet.

*Skylanders – Not sure how this franchise is still alive….(not my bag)

*1, 2, Switch – Could also be known as “not-Wario Ware”.  The generic “Here’s what this system can do” game, a la Wii Sports.  I didn’t pick it up as I don’t find myself using it much.

*Just Dance 2017 – Everyone knows this one, not my bag.

*Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove and Spectre of Torment – I don’t have any experience with Shovel Knight, but they ranked 2 separate launch titles, might have to check it out.

*I am Setsuna – JRPG, shiny looking, I’ve heard good things

*Snipper Clips – Co-op “here’s what this system can do” game.  I hear it’s fun, may try it later.

*Fast RMX, aka “Not F-Zero” – Generic hovercraft racing game.  Fun times, not much to say.  Low price point is appropriate.

(The latter half of this list is Digital release only)

 

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wilds - So as you all know, this was why I got this system.  I could have gotten it for WiiU, but honestly, who wasn't disappointed with the quality of TP on GC as opposed to Wii?  This is the game I have spent the most time on so far and it has been fantastic.  They promised open world, they promised customization, they promised no hand-holding, they promised much with this game and they delivered all this and more.  here is a brief synopsis of my playtime so far (around 12-20 hours):

Phase 1 - The game starts you in the "great plateau" section where your first directive is to log the map of the region.  You then meet an old man with a glider that will let you visit other regions, but he won't give it to you until you go through the first 4 shiekah shrines. (These shrines litter the landscape and completing their puzzles is your sole source of increasing your heart containers and stamina gauge)  These 4 shrines give you the basic tools which make your sheikah slate an indispensable tool.  After doing this, the old man reveals who he really is and gives you the basic story of the game. (omitted for spoiler sake)

Phase 2 - What to do next?  You must find out how to gather enough power to face Ganon, so a trip to Kakariko village and the sage Impa is in order.  After talking to her you must make your way to Hateno Village and talk to another sage who will unlock the rest of your Shiekah Slate abilities.  After returning to Impa you now have 12 photos in your slate from the time when you first faced Ganon and must return to those places to restore your fractured memories.  The hard thing being, all you have to go on is the picture and NO other guidance. (I found ONE only because it had Hyrule castle as a landmark to guide me)  Your other mission is to find and free the 4 ancient guardian beasts which were tainted by Ganon.  Just this morning I finally reached my first one, in the Zora river. (Note, you can find and free these in any order, I just happened to stumble upon this one first.)

Now this all sounds easy enough, except when you consider I said I've been playing for nearly 2 dozen hours to get to this point, the BAREST of starts.  This has been littered with at least 30-40 "game over you died, continue?" screens from either falling or running into a giant beast before I had the right equipment to handle it.  the game is HARD, but in a good way.  It's challenging.

I've gone through about 16 shrines by now, caught one horse plus got Epona from an Amiibo, picked up a couple various pieces of armor and a lot of varied weapons.  A couple notes:

*Weapons: Your weapons are sorted into melee weapons (swords, sticks, mops, spears, even Bokoblin skeleton arms), bows/Arrows and Shields.  Weapons have a VERY short life-span generally.  Standard clubs, swords and spears will break after just 4-6 enemies (12-15 hits) and bows will break after shooting a dozen or two arrows.  Shields are equally fragile, but not as common to break as there are many 2 handed weapons that don't let you use your shield.  There are upgraded weapons which last longer (about twice as long) but nothing indestructible yet.  I'm guessing there is a weapon lab somewhere, but I haven't found it yet.

Horses: yep, you have to catch and tame horses.  They hang out in certain fields (usually near stables) and if you sneak up behind them and jump on you can calm and tame them gradually.  You are able to hold up to 5 horses in the stable and your horses are available from any stable you find (I've found 2 so far and there are more out there).  The Smash Bros. Link *Amiibo when you first tap it will give you Epona who has max stats and is already tamed if you are too lazy to tame your own.

*Travel: The in-game world is MASSIVE.  Larger than any I've ever seen.  Each different region of Hyrule has a tower where you can download a map of the area.  If you were to walk Link from one end to the other of a single region it would likely take 5-10 minutes of real time.  And so far I've uncover 4 or 5 of these regions with at least that many more to go.  Horses make it MUCH easier to travel, but can't traverse water or sharp inclines.  There is really no where you can't go.  If you find a river you can swim.  If you find a wall or mountain, you can climb.  However climbing to high areas is difficult because it will get colder and if you don't have a torch or insulated clothing you will gradually lose hearts from cold exposure. (in addition, climbing into a fire dungeon with wooden weapons equipped or jumping in a river with a rod that shoots lightning slung on your back is an automatic ticket to a bad time.)  Now considering all towns and major landmarks are considerable distances apart and having to walk or ride between them is RIDICULOUSLY time-consuming, they added in a function on the shiekah slate for transportation.  Link can transport immediately to ANY map tower, Shrine or other place of interest with a transport hub that he has activated.  So when the Sage at Hateno Village says "Go see Impa and then come back and see me", rather than a 30 minute slog across roads and mountains, it's a few seconds to teleport, talk and teleport back.  But, as always, too many short cuts and you'll run out of supplies.  Exploration is still key.

 

So there it is.  As I said, Ijust now got to my first guardian beast and I believe this is also the first true "dungeon" (though it appears it won't be your standard "Find the item, find the big key, fight the boss" dungeon).  I'm really enjoying this so much and am excited to play more.

 

As for the system itself, personally I really like it.  It's comfortable, looks good, plays well, customizes well and honestly, I find myself REALLY interested to find out what else they are going to put on it.  I'm actually anxious to be able to play more titles on it.

 
 

Good write up. A few notes, there is no way to repair weapons. This is intended to be part of the difficulty of the game. There is a way to cheese repair by letting one of the octoroks suck in your weapon. When you kill it and get it back it will be at 100% durability and if it was a rusted weapon it will no longer be rusted. The Master Sword is indestructible but has a cool down period after using it. 

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Also, if you have any questions, AMA.  (Up front: no I haven't licked the cartridge, and no I don't plan to.)

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Hey guys!  So it's been over a month since I started playing BOTW.  Figured I'd give a progress report.

Am I still playing it?  Hell yes.

What have you accomplished? Ok, so here's where we build off the last post I made.  We already went over basics of dungeons, weapons and Shrines.  So here is a list of the various things you can do in the game:

Shrines - Qty 120.  Each shrine acts as a mini-dungeon, generally with 1-2 puzzles to solve or a monster to beat (3 different difficulties on the monsters).  each time you beat a shrine you get an orb.  4 orbs can be used to increase your heart count or your stamina (You stare with 3 hearts and 1 stamina wheel.  Stamina wheel increases give you 1/5th of a wheel).  I've beaten all 120 shrines, currently have 27 hearts and 3 total stamina wheels (10 1/5ths +20 hearts = 120 shrines, the 7 extra hearts are 3 at the start of the game and 1 heart container for beating each Divine Beast Dungeon).

Map - As I said before there are about 10 regions on the map you have to unlock.  This is pretty easy, since you can see the map spires from a considerable distance, though some are harder to climb than others as they require more stamina or have obstacles around their base.  The real challenge is exploring the map.  A good 25% of your in-game completion percentage is exploring every nook and cranny of the game map.  When you enter a named region it will display on your screen and will automatically mark the name of that area on your map.  to get 100% completion you must have ALL of these marked on your map.  This is pretty easily completed just by finding all 120 shrines as well as....

Korok seeds - Every open world game needs some little inane collection mission, BOTW has the Korok.  Koroks are small woodland creatures, first encountered in The Wind Waker.  These mischievous critters hide ALL over Hyrule.  You meet a large Korok on your travels named Hestu.  As a sidequest you must help Hestu get back his beloved Maracas. (no seriously, his Maracas)  After doing this he is unimaginatively grateful, but something is amiss.  His Maracas are not making any noise!  Those little Korok scamps have made away with all the seeds that give his Maracas their signature rattle sound.  It's now your job to go get them back.  He'll even help you increase your inventory space if you do!  So how do you find them?  It's as easy as picking up suspicious lone rocks, reforming rock cube puzzles, diving through flower rings on the water, shooting archery targets, etc.  If you come across something suspicious it is likely a Korok puzzle.  Here's the fun part:  THERE ARE 900 KOROK PUZZLES IN BOTW  Not only that, but you cease getting inventory upgrades after about 441 seeds.  That means HALF of the seeds don't really give you a reward.  In fact, you want to know what he gives you for getting all 900?  Spoiler warning, even though it's so stupid it shouldn't matter:  he gives you a golden piece of Korok poop.  TOTALLY serious.  I have found about 200 of these seeds.  Am I just sad enough that I must complete this useless task and get my golden poop?  Of course I am.  (fun fact: since each requirement for in-game completion percentage is weighted equally, finding Korok seeds accounts for 72% of your completion percentage)

Divine Beasts - So I briefly mentioned them before.  There were 4 guardian beasts, each piloted by a different representative of the Hyrule races (Goron, Zora, Gerudo and Rito).  Back when Ganon first appeared he used his evil to take control of these beasts and kill the pilots.  Your goal is to remove Ganon's taint from the beasts and return control of them to the spirits of the 4 so that they may help you defeat Ganon so they can find peace in the afterlife.  I won't say much more but defeated all 4 (First Zora, then Rito, Gerudo and finally Goron).  This accomplishes 2 things in game.  (Heavy spoiler warning here, just move on to the next paragraph if you don't want spoilers: If you do not defeat one or more Divine Beasts, you must face the specific dungeon boss(es) of those beasts right before you fight Ganon.  Also if you defeat all 4 it knocks ganon's health down by half)

Hyrule Compendium - One of the Sheikah Slate's features is a sensor that beeps when you are near a shrine (which helps because some are hidden very well).  When you get this feature upgraded you now have a camera on your slate.  Now you can snap shots of the various flora and fauna of Hyrule and reprogram your sensor to find a specific thing.  Really helps when an NPC quest wants a specific bug or lizard.  So there is an in-game catalog.  Every time you take a picture of a monster, insect, animal, plant, rock type, weapon etc it logs in your compendium for sensor use.  So you can actually create a compendium of 384 pictures.  Now this could be a HUGE task, especially considering you might now know before you defeat a divine beast and that boss is forever lost from your picture library.  NOT TO WORRY!  for those you miss (or if you're just lazy like me) you can BUY all the pictures you want for the compendium.  Paying 100 rupees to one of the NPCs gives you a random picture you don't have.  500 rupees for the boss pictures but you can't buy those until after you beat Ganon.

Mini bosses - there are 4 mini bosses: Lynel, Moldulga, Hinox and Talus.  There are 40 each of the latter 2, 4 moldulgas and probably 20 Lynel littering the map.  If you manage to beat all of them on the map (except Lynel) you'll get a set of medals for doing so. (they don't do anything, but it's a cool bragging thing)  Lynel are the hardest fights in the game, harder even than Ganon and the dungeon bosses.  But they give some great loot.

 

I could go on.  Armor upgrades, Weapon drops, Master Sword, Amiibo items, but it's almost time for me to get off work and I'm sure you're tired of reading.  Sufficed to say, I've beaten the game, gotten most of the accomplishments and am still having a great time.  All I really have left is Korok seeds and armor upgrades.

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While the game sounds fantastic I will say that I am a bit disappointed to hear about how they tackle shrines and dungeons.  Going through massive dungeons is quintessential Zelda; making the move to smaller dungeons with 1-2 rooms and a few monsters would kill it for me.  I dont doubt it's a great game, just not the direction I was hoping for.

RosalieFGD likes this

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It's here or there, really.  The Divine beasts (the 4 major dungeons) are keeping in the style of puzzle solving dungeons, but yeah, enemies therein are non-existent (or few and far between).  The sheer number of shrines, being mini-dungeons, are very fun for the most part and have some great puzzles.  The best of the best, though, is Hyrule castle.  Not a "dungeon" per se, since it is free roaming, has several exits/entrances and honestly, you can pretty easily bypass all of it to get to Ganon.  But if you are into exploring and delving into all the nooks and crannies, it is what EACH dungeon should have been, honestly.  If the "bonus" dungeon in the DLC ends up being anything like it, I will consider it worth the full price of the DLC.

Second place would be a specific shrine quest which takes place completely on an island called Eventide Island.  HUGE spoiler for this in:

3...

2...

1...

Eventide Island is a small island in the southeast corner of the map.  it can be visited at any time, really, but most likely you won't find it until you are well into the game, with some good weapons and good armor.  The catch is that as soon as you step foot on the island you are stripped of ALL your items, weapons and armor.  the only thing you have is your shiekah slate powers and any special abilities from beating Divine Beasts.  You must now explore the island, using only items you find lying around and the powers stated above to defeat pretty good size groups of enemies, including a Hinox (cyclopean mini-boss) to get 3 orbs placed in pedestals.  Once the orbs are in place, you get your inventory back.  It's a really good challenge.  Initially it's thunderstorming so using your magnet shiekah power to put metal boxes in the middle of enemy groups so the lightning takes them out is a handy way to accrue some basic weapons.  Plus there's one decent axe in the middle of a swamp you can get with the same power.  For me, it was the second to last Shrine I went after so it was a trip having to fight with crappy wooden weapons that did minimal damage and broke rather easily.

 

But honestly, yeah, this entry into the Zelda mythos is definitely more about the overworld and what you find in the wilds than the dungeons.  It's definitely a departure, but I enjoy for those reasons.  I just got a Majora's Mask NFC chip Amiibo spoof (ordered it a few days before they announced the new ones coming in June) in the mail on Monday.  Spent each of the last 3 days save scumming for one of the armor pieces and then farming materials to upgrade.  I happily have my full set of max level Fierce Deity armor.  Now to save scum for the sword, which will probably be a LOT lower drop rate.  So now that I have that, I'll probably go back to Korok hunting.

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I abaolutely love my switch. Bomberman is kinda annoying with grinding to buy the secret bombers.  

 

Zelda is a blast. I have been taking my time with it, but so far I love it. I tend to prefer using spear like weapons and hate two-handed ones like a claymore. 

 

I am eager as hell for the 2 Sonic Games though. 

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I'll have to dig deeper into bomberman, I didn't even know about secret bombers, lol.

I got over 300 on Korok seeds, but have backed off since just because my schedule got hectic.  I'll probably go back to it tonight.  The real news in Switchland is Mario kart 8 deluxe.  I was originally put out because it was just a revamp of the last title, instead of a new one, but being Mario Kart, I got it anyway.  As it is, I'm really enjoying it.  I'm not sure it justifies the full game price tag, as they didn't add TOO much, but I think it would have still been a good buy at $40.

They added a few new racers, most prominent being the inkling boy and girl.  The standard races remain largely untouched aside from balancing tweaks, but they did add some kind of "mini boost" which I haven't figured out yet as well as the ability to hold 2 items.  A big blah point for me on the WiiU version was the fact that holding an item behind you didn't take it out of your inventory as it had on previous iterations of the series.  This makes it a lot more interesting.  They added 2 items, the "cape-feather" from super Mario world which gives you a quick jump and the Boo which steals an opponent's item.  One thing that some people are griping about is that everything aside from kart parts is already unlocked.  I don't care much because I'm really tired of playing 50cc tracks.  But they did add a perk there.  If you finish a cup with any stars on a higher track, you get the stars for all speeds beneath that (i.e. if you finish mushroom cup on 150CC with 3 stars, you will get those stars on Mushroom cup 50 and 100CC).

Probably the best update is Battle Mode.  Rather than just having 2 modes (balloon battle and coin rush) there are now FIVE battle modes.  The two classics are still there and are supplemented by:

Bob-omb Blast - Nothing but bombs and lots of bombs.  Each item box gives you a bomb.  You can hold up to 5 of them.  And your own bombs don't hurt you.  It's a fun full-blast free-for-all.

Grab-the-Shiny - essentially king of the hill, except the hill is a pick-up.  If you grab the big shiny a 20 second clock will start counting down.  If someone hits you with an item you lose the shiny and someone else can pick it up and their 20 second clock will start.  If you get the shiny back, your clock starts again from where it left off.  So the player who holds the shiny for 20 cumulative seconds during the game wins.

Captures the Renegades! - My newest favorite.  This mode is a team game, each race alternates with your team either being the Renegades or the Law.  The Law all have a piranha plant in front of their kart (they can still get and use items).  Their goals is to find and eat the Renegades.  This puts the renegades in cages that float above the ground with a button underneath.  If a free Renegade hits the button it will free all the Renegades that are in that cage.  The game ends either when all renegades are captured at the same time(Law win) or when the timer runs out(renegade win).  In addition players gain points for each Renegade they capture as the Law and each teammate they free as a Renegade.

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2 hours ago, Stryyder said:

I'll have to dig deeper into bomberman, I didn't even know about secret bombers, lol.

 

Just beat story mode on any difficulty. If you get 3 stars on every stage you can buy the super-secret bomber. The secret bombers are just the bosses. 

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I think my last Korok count was 562.  almost 2/3 of the way there.  Picked up the last armor item I needed (Shiek's Mask).

Details were announced for the first round of BotW DLC.  We knew this would be the smaller of the 2 packs.  Includes a "Hard Mode", which increases the monster levels, introducing a new highest difficulty and even features enemies in the sky on balloon platforms.  Also includes "Trial of the Sword" and 45 floor enemy wave challenge dungeon.  If you can successfully complete it your Master Sword will be "unlocked" and stay in its powered up mode for a constant 60 attack rating and greater durability(however it can still run out of energy).  2 new innate features include a "Hero Tracker" mode, which shows the last 200 or so hours of travel on your Sheikah slate map and a "Travel Medallion" which allows you to create a new warp spot anywhere on the map.

Finally the first DLC pack will introduce a handful of new clothing items: Tingles Outfit (Full outfit), Phantom Armor (Full outfit, from the Phantom Hourglass design), Midna's Helmet (Headpiece only), Majora's Mask (Headpiece only) and Korok Mask (Headpiece only).  The Korok mask will also have a function similar to the great fairy mask from MM where it will shake when a Korok seed is near.  (Handy to find those last few of the 900 korok seeds)

No release date yet, likely June/July.  I would guess shortly after or before Splatoon to push Zelda a bit to keep it sharing the spotlight.

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So E3 news has been all smiles for Nintendo.  They are pulling out all the stops and making MS/Sony look sad. (Xbox One X, lol)

First though, a little update on my BotW progress, as is my custom.  In the month since my last update I have finished ALL 900 Korok seeds and gotten my golden poop, as well as farmed for nearly all the ingredients to upgrade my armor pieces.  The last thing I need is about 30 more Topaz chunks to upgrade one of my amiibo armor and they will all be done.  In fact, once I do that, I'll have pretty much finished EVERY single thing you can do in the game (aside from getting 999 of all items, which is just nuts and I'm not going to do it).  Luckily for me, they just announced:

BotW DLC 1 - The Master Trials - Release date: 6/30/17!!  There was some trepidation when people saw the "8/30" placeholder date on the Nintendo store, but the new E3 announcement is that it will drop at the end of this month!  They also revealed more about the "Trial of the Sword", which is the 50 stage challenge that lets you unlock the power of the Master Sword.  Rather than just being a "wave after wave" dungeon room this looks like a large area tactical battle, and it also looks like they limit your equipment (akin to Eventide Island which I talked about previously).  Looks a LOT more involved that people were thinking, definitely worth the price of the DLC pack.  They also revealed the name of DLC pack 2, which comes out toward the end of the year: The Champions' Ballad which will add a new dungeon, new story event and more challenges.

Amiibo announcements - Most are (im)patiently awaiting the forthcoming new amiibos, such as the Majora's Mask, Skyward Sword and Twilight Princess Links that are coming out at the end of next week, as well as the doubled up Cloud, Bayonetta, Inkling and Corrin ones for July.  But, keeping ahead of the game, Nintendo has revealed 3 new sets coming later this year:

BotW Champions - The 4 champions of legend; Urbosa, Mipha, Revali and Daruk (most likely launching in conjunction with DLC pack 2 in the fall/winter)

Wedding Mario - Mario, Peach and Bowser in WEDDING attire. (launching with Mario Odyssey in October)

Metroid - A new Samus Aran as well as a Metroid amiibo. (most likely launching in conjuction with Metroid: Samus Returns on 3DS in September)

New Game/Release Announcements:  At least one known game finally gets a release date, Mario Odyssey for the Switch releases 10/27 featuring something that seems like a combination of 2 legend of Zelda games, Minish Cap and Phantom Hourglass.  Mario dons "Cappy", a sentient hat which he can use to take control of bad guys for a short time.

Metroid x2 - Many were disappointed in the lack of Metroid info upon the switch release.  Many were disappointed by the clunky and nonsensical "Federation Force", which seemed more of a generic game reskin than a dedicated Metroid title.  and really, people have been disappointed since Other M took Metroid places it shouldn't have gone.  Well, Nintendo has heard your pleas and dropped not one, but TWO Power Bombs on the crowd at E3.  At first just a simple teaser showing clouds of space dust coming together to form the iconic "S" symbol and then a large # 4 next to it, revealing that Metroid Prime 4 is being developed for Switch.  Knowing that a mere teaser with no related footage or release info wouldn't be enough for those who have been waiting 8 years for a  proper Metroid installment, they also revealed that another game was already on the way this year: Metroid: Samus Returns, a side-scroller with some 3d elements for N3DS, to be released on 9/15/17.  This game is, at heart(actually they call it a "reimagining"), a remake of Metroid II Return of Samus, but with EXTREME upgrades in combat, control and graphics.

All this plus: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (Holiday 2017, NS), New Kirby Game (2018, NS), Proper Pokémon title for Switch (at least a year or more away, NS), New Yoshi Game (2018, NS), Rocket League port (Holiday 2017, NS, with supposed cross-platform play).

 

Honestly, I'm floored by Nintendo.  Switch had a lukewarm release, toasted slightly by BotW.  But for E3, to steal a quote from a commenter on Kotaku, they "swept the leg".

sh0ryu_repp4 likes this

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10 hours ago, Stryyder said:

All this plus: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (Holiday 2017, NS), New Kirby Game (2018, NS), Proper Pokémon title for Switch (at least a year or more away, NS), New Yoshi Game (2018, NS), Rocket League port (Holiday 2017, NS, with supposed cross-platform play).

At least there's confirmation of a core Pokémon title in the works exclusively for the Nintendo Switch that isn't Pokkén Tournament DX (Brand New Region and Starter Pokémon hopefully) according to Game Freak at E3 this year unless it's going to be a remake of Diamond and Pearl.

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They did the impossible. After 16 years I actually want to own a Nintendo home console again.

All it took were games that I actually want to play... lol

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