Leftovers: DS Affairs
By Zach Patterson Monday, 22 Mar 2010

I seem to have played about a dozen games lately, but finished none of them. Not exactly easy to devote a full article to something when you just don’t feel like completing it. Luckily, LEFTOVERS is here to allow me to fill space about them anyway! Let’s get to it with a trio of DS games I’ve played recently.

GTA: Chinatown Wars

I recently featured this in a Game Hunt article as a nice snag, and it’s without a doubt a very polished title. The cutscenes are dynamic and comic book-esque with that distinct GTA look, the missions and layout of the game seem just like the big brother games on more advanced systems, there’s fun minigames, and it’s a rather adult title for a DS game. So why do I have little urge to play it? Maybe it’s the overhead view or just the limitations of the DS, I dunno. The game feels good and has tons of potential, but after 20 mins I’m usually done with it. Sometimes I think the overhead view kinda kills the visceral action for me. Then again, sandbox games usually end in me abandoning them since there’s too much to do and I end up doing nothing, so that could be in play too. I’ll probably give this one a few more shots because of how overwhelmingly great the reviews were for it, but as of now I’m a bit lukewarm on it.

Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings

I’ve been tangled in a mess of FF games recently, from starting this and FF12 simultaneously, then subsequently buying 13 and starting that too. However, Revenant Wings is a pretty nifty title for what it is. It’s an interesting hybrid of console strategy-RPG like FF Tactics and more of an RTS like Warcraft, while also mixing in

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some stuff from FF12 into the battle scheme. It’s a simple-but-complicated battle system that involves a lot of prep work at the start of battles in order to match up against the opponent properly and then lead your little army against them. For all the variables that can go into a fight, they are actually kinda mindless once you get into it, where you essentially send your troop at another and let them attack wildly. As long as you win the rock-paper-scissors convention of the battle system against the enemy, you should be solid. I appreciate the reprised themes from 12 as well as the simplified art and sprite representations of the characters. It’s a sequel to 12 but keeps it simple so that if you haven’t played it before you certainly won’t be too lost. The story is decent but not intrusive and is good enough to keep you playing. And it looks great on screen, plus some excellent cinemas. I’ll be playing this and probably giving a full review sometime.

Little Red Riding Hood’s Zombie BBQ

What a name. Well, this game is bargain bin filler, plain and simple, as I bought it brand new for less than 10 bucks. In its defense, however, it’s a competent shooter. The game is a ridiculous anime sequel to the Little Red Riding Hood story mixed in with other fairy tales with a big breasted Red Riding Hood whipping out some guns and blowing away zombie infestations. It provides a decent challenge, is moderately charming, and will probably keep you playing for a bit, but its all stylus based, which can be annoying. Additionally, it’s very repetitive. Music, enemies, artwork, and gameplay in general seems to be the same shit over and over. Good cheap game, but maybe not necessarily a “good” game.

2 Responses to “Leftovers: DS Affairs”

  1. Eric Kennedy Says:

    I remember reading a short article about that Little Red Riding Hood game a while back… I had hopes that it would be a “sleeper” title, but I’m not surprised that it’s fairly forgettable. If I can get it for like five bucks someday, maybe I will.

    I myself have yet to dig into Chinatown Wars, but even though you’re somewhat lukewarm on it, your assessment is encouraging. I think I’ll like it.

    Being a huge fan of RTS and Tactical RPGs, I figured Revenant Wings would be perfect for me… but if the actual battles are pretty mindless, I really don’t know.

  2. Zach Patterson Says:

    Perhaps the word mindless was a poor choice of words. There’s definitely a ton of strategy in the battles, as you need to consider the rock paper scissors aspect as well as the elemental stuff (i.e. don’t go after someone strong against fire with a fire elemental), but occasionally the game gets to a point where you kinda just have to manpile your troops in one area and brute force your way through it, the battle system dynamics be damned.

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