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Thứ Hai, 21 tháng 11, 2016

Pokemon Sun and Moon Review

From Dusk 'Til Dawn

With a twenty year tenure under its belt, the fact that the core gameplay of Pokemon has gone relatively unchanged and has retained a broad appeal through multiple generations is a testament to the quality of the series. Content additions and tweaks have graced each new entry, but Pokemon Sun and Moon have easily used the broadest brush stroke of feature alterations. The purest Pokemon diehard fans may cling to nitpicky criticisms, but the fresh perspective and simple improvements provide relief to some of the series' redundant foundations. And yet for all the uproar of change, there are still many familiar and comforting elements that should assure lifelong fans they have not been cast aside.

The game starts you off in traditional fashion, as a young boy or girl recently relocated to a new region, with an eager spirit, a flair for adventure, and an innate proficiency at handling Pokemon that catches the eye of the local Professor. After a short introduction to some key characters, you are given the arduous task of choosing your Grass, Fire, or aces up type starting Pokemon, and with your mother's blessing are set free to uncover the mysteries of the gorgeous Alola region.

This Hawaiian inspired paradise consists of four main islands. Each contains specks of terrain that match the various Pokemon types, though you are never too far from perky palm trees, golden sandy beaches, and translucent blue ocean waters. The laid back atmosphere permeates into the personalities of the region's inhabitants, with most of the people you encounter infused with vigor and a lust for life. The antagonizing Team Skull could have brought a severe contrast that befits their moniker, but most of the goons who attempt to impede your progress are full of bumbling bluster, with more bark than bite.

You'll find more of a challenge in the Island Trials, the game's major replacement of the Pokemon Gyms of old. Each of the four islands presents a selection of activities that culminates into a marquis battle against the Kahuna of the island as well as Totem Pokemon (essentially regular Pokemon stuffed with steroids). Trials consist of chores such as foraging for ingredients, following clues to solve mysteries, and taking snapshots of Pokemon. It lacks the gladiatorial spectacle of taking on a gym leader to taunt your prowess to the audience, but the varied tasks provide a multifaceted approach which breaks up the linear structure veterans have grown accustomed to.

It becomes apparent early on that Pokemon Sun and Moon pays heavy attention to the narrative, with cutscenes and conversations at nearly every turn. For the most part it is a predictable plot, with a few moments that will surprise and confuse only those who have been spamming the A button through all the text. Despite the vanilla storyline, it still provides some exciting showdowns and introduces a few characters with enough style and personality that I hope to see them in future Pokemon adventures.

Another thing I would like to see going forward in the series is the wonderfully laid out user interface. The breakdown of menu screens is still categorized into familiar headings such as the item screen, Pokédex, and summary pages, but the ease of access in navigating these screens, especially during combat, is a smooth process rather than a time consuming chore. For example, a Poké Ball icon located right on the main touch screen allows you to quickly choose and toss a Poké Ball at a weakened wild Pokemon rather than fumbling through menu screens to grab one. But perhaps the simplest and most welcome addition, especially for newcomers, is the move effectiveness indicators. No longer do you need the encyclopedic memorization of what element types are vulnerable to others. After a single battle against a new Pokemon, your entire move list will indicate which moves are "super effective" and which are not effective at all. This glorious sight persists even when swapping Pokemon mid-battle, allowing you to choose the most valuable Pokemon in your party to tackle the opponent across the field.

Thứ Năm, 17 tháng 11, 2016

Pokemon Sun & Moon Break Shipment Records

P-Day is upon us: Pokemon Sun & Moon are set to launch at midnight tonight in North America. It seems that the game is already destined for success, because Nintendo has announced that the games have shipped over 10 million units worldwide. This breaks the record for highest initial shipment of any 3DS software. Nintendo attributes the widespread demand for Sun & Moon to Pokemon Go, which renewed interest in the series for old fans worldwide while bringing in newcomers thanks to its accessibility.

Also of interest to would-be Pokemon trainers is the commencement of a special distribution for Munchlax in Sun & Moon. This Munchlax is available via online download with the Mystery Gift function and carries a Snorlium Z crystal. The crystal enables it to use the Pulverizing Pancake Z-Move upon its evolution into Snorlax. Distribution will end on January 11, 2017, so be sure to get yours before then.

Finally, if you can't contain the Pokemon hype, you can download one of two new 3DS home menu themes starting tomorrow. One has a tropical motif, while the other features legendary Pokemon Solgaleo and Lunala.

I'll be among the crowds heading out late tonight to pick up my copy - how about you?
Play Classic game Pokemon at : http;//webofsolitaire.com

Thứ Hai, 14 tháng 11, 2016

Microsoft Celebrating Halo's 15th Anniversary With Big Event Next Week

Here's something to make you feel old: the Halo franchise celebrates its 15th anniversary this week.

To celebrate, developer 343 Industries is holding a livestream event and more this coming Tuesday, November 15, which is 15 years to the day after Halo: Combat Evolved came out in 2001.

One part of the celebration is a Twitch livestream, beginning at 3:43 PM PT.

"During the jam-packed show we'll have a special walkthrough of the Halo Museum, talk Halo Wars 2 with Dan Ayoub & Max Szlagor, hear about some of the team and community's fondest Halo memories, play Halo 5 with fans, talk HCS with Tashi & Strongside, take a look at the upcoming Halo Loot crate with James, answer your tweets and whatever else we end up doing when we inevitably stray from script," 343 said about the event in its newest weekly blog post.

343 is also launching an "Anniversary Throwback" playlist for Halo 5, featuring Combat Evovled maps re-made in Halo 5 with the Forge tools. There will also be "free stuff."

"What kind of birthday party would it be without goodie bags for attendees!? I don't want to spoil the surprise but I think you'll dig it," 343 said.

Also in the blog post, 343 teased plans for Halo 5 even beyond the anniversary event. As 343 has said before, more DLC is coming.

"Plans are being made for some big holiday playlist updates as well as the release of the next big Halo 5 content update," 343 said. "I know you're eager for those juicy details and we look forward to being able to share more soon."

As stated previously, Halo 5's next major update will add more maps for Warzone Firefight, new Forge canvases, an "improved spectator experience," and the ability to join live custom games on Xbox One and Windows 10 PC.

The game's newest free content update was September's Anvil's Legacy, which was the ninth free expansion. Halo 5's other expansions included The Battle of Shadow and Light (November), Cartographer's Gift (December), Infinity's Armor (January), Scorpion games (February), Ghosts of Meridian (April), Memories of Reach (May), Hog Wild (May), and Warzone Firefight (June).