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Showing posts from September, 2013

Tales of Xillia – “It Just Keeps Gettin’ Better!” (Review)

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There’s never a guarantee that an entry in the long-running Tales series by Namco Bandai is going to make it to English-speaking areas of the world, so when one does show up on western shores people generally pay attention. While in the states the series has always played second fiddle to the quintessential JRPG franchise, Final Fantasy, Tales’ more traditional approach to the genre coupled with a unique fast-paced combat system continues to win over old and new fans alike, especially as gamers question the direction being taken by Final Fantasy developer, Square Enix.

Story
In the PS3-exclusive Tales of Xillia (that’s pronounced “ek-ZI-LEE-uh”), players are given the choice between playing primarily as either Jude Mathis, a promising medical student with a background in martial arts, or Milla Maxwell, a fairy-like being (referred to simply as ‘spirits’) tasked with destroying a weapon that kills humans and spirits en masse. While for most of the game these two protagonists experience t…

Nintendo 3DS XL Review – This is (Finally) the Handheld to Have

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While the WiiU continues to struggle to gain a user base, Nintendo’s other current generation console, the portable Nintendo 3DS, is at last gaining traction and a solid following in both eastern and western areas of the world. Even though the device has been around for a couple of years now, there are still plenty of potential customers out there who are finally finding the growing 3DS library of games enticing enough to consider a purchase. For that reason I figure is still beneficial to release a review so that interested parties who (like me) weren’t brave enough to be early adopters can get a feel for the device to see if perhaps after a couple of years it is now the right gaming device for them. Let’s get started!

Build
The Nintendo 3DS XL does not conform to recent standards set upon other new technologies, but nevertheless right out of the box it feels like a high-quality product. Yes, it’s thick and the screen operates on a snap hinge, but the matte plastic body feels solid and…

What’s Going on With Technology?

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Nintendo 2DS, a PS Vita TV, a handheld Android gaming console, a plastic iPhone—who would have thought gadgets like these would actually exist? While 2013 has seen some really great new tech so far, lately the phrase that keeps coming to mind is just: “Well, that’s weird.”

Has Technology Stagnated?
The tail end of the 20th century was rife with progress. Computers went from occupying entire rooms to fitting in a pocket, and from lighting up LEDs to displaying fully 3D, interactive environments. The foundations were being laid. The next step for technology was always obvious, because the holes in what could be accomplished with it stared us right in the face—literally (and destroyed our eyes in the process).

Then the 2000s rolled around, and technology settled into a comfortable state of being capable of basically anything. Massive, revolutionary changes were reduced to incremental upgrades. If you were a gamer or mobile device-touting business person things were fairly interesting, but …