Dungeon Diving

Dungeons can be described very differently depending on the design of the game you decided to devote yourself to doing. The differences can be divided through different factors so to derive what defines different dungeons we need to define the differences. The first we’ll dwell on is depth since dungeon dives can be deceptively deep. Some dungeons are defined by their level of depth and diving deeper gives you the rewards you deserve. The deeper you go, the more difficulties you deal with as dungeon enemies can deal serious damage. Typically the dungeons that you can dive deeper in deal out more difficult demons and dish out traps that are difficult to detect. Some of these dangerous devices can lead to instant death which is delightful to deal with in dungeons where death usually deems your descent worthless or you drop the rewards you desperately dived in for, causing them to disappear and be deemed lost in the depths of the dungeon. Anyway diving into dungeons that are of a decent depth drop decent stuff that are designed to better demonstrate your stats such as damage dealing, defensive strength as well as speed dexterity. Of course this dungeon is designed to drive you into its depths. After all, delving into the depths and not getting your dues despite everything would be disappointing and disheartening and so developers would normally design deeper dungeons with more deluxe drop rates to keep players diving in to discover more in the dungeon. Of course this is a dungeon designed with depth being what denotes the difficulty. Some dungeons don’t decide difficulty solely based on depth.

Some dungeons are designed to disrupt you rather than drag you to your demise. It is difficult to direct yourself in the right direction due to the deliberate design of the dungeon. Dungeons like these are designed to deceive you and direct you through destroying the deception and decorating yourself to do battle against the darkest depths of the dungeon. Each door has either a demonic creature or a devious riddle that you must dedicate yourself to decoding to move down through the next door. Doing this is the most direct way of defeating the dungeon and dungeons defeated in this way tend to disappear and or be deemed dead weight due to being destroyed. These dungeons are devices designed to develop your growth at a decent pace and diversify your skillset by delivering new items that directly diversify your arsenal of dangerous devices need to defeat the demons the game will definitely drown you in. They don’t require delving deep to defeat them, but rather deciding what direction is optimal and decoding the deceptive riddles are the deciding factors in defeating these dungeons. Of course defeating enemies is definitely required for every dungeon, but the difference is that one is delayed by depth while the others delayed by how adept you are at deciphering and discovering the direction the dungeon wants you to decide. Some dungeons aren’t designed in such a detail manner though. Some dungeons just want you to dive as deep as you can.

Some dungeons have details that let you designate different locations, but some are designed to be different during each attempt at diving deeper. The difference that decides the difficulty isn’t how deep it is or how deft you are at decoding riddles. The difference is how dexterous are you at dodging and do you have decent luck. Dealing with different dungeon layouts each time delivers a different level of difficulty since that difference usually decides the run. If you do know what you are doing and can diligently dodge the daring demons trying to devour you then you can depart downwards and develop yourself to defeat the devils at the depths. Typically games designed with these dungeons have different devices to allow you to develop different playstyles as you dive deeper. Discovery is the dominant factor deciding if you taste defeat and die after everything you’ve done or if you dive to the deepest depths and defeat the darkness dwelling into the depths without a do over. The more you discover, the more devices at your disposal which leads to diversifying the directions you can take which leads to a decrease in the death count. Typically dying is disheartening, but if you have drive and are determined to reach the depths than doing your best to dodge drastically reduces deaths so don’t give in no matter what dungeon you decide to dive into and keep diving to discover new directions as you devote yourself to digging up new details in new dungeons. That does it for today. Maybe one day I will divvy up my time and not decide to deliver these documents at the darkest hour. Goodbye.

A Few Tips For Some Pokémon Fans

Pokémon games are fun. I enjoy playing them and probably always will. That being said, I do think that they can be a bit too easy. This is especially noteworthy in the more recent titles. Due to this I have spent some time researching ways to bring more challenges to these games without relying on the many rom-hacks available that do similar things. The main reason for that is because I don’t usually play emulators for these games seeing as I own pretty much all of them already. With all that being said, here are a few I found while spending my time watching multiple people play Pokémon instead of being productive for the past couple of weeks. Let’s chalk it up to a bit of a lazy spell and leave it at that.

  1. Change the game to set mode. I am not sure if everyone was aware of this particular feature already, but if there is someone out there that didn’t know this, then at least I wasn’t last. Set mode is pretty simple to explain. You see, there are two modes built into the game: switch and set. You know whenever you fight a trainer and after you defeat one of their Pokémon the game gives an option to have you switch out your Pokémon to better deal with their upcoming Pokémon? Apparently that is called switch mode and it can be turned off in the settings. You just have to change it to set mode so that prompt doesn’t come up and you don’t get the free switch during battle. It doesn’t revolutionize the game, but it add least spices things up a little bit by giving enemy trainers more initiative in battle.
  2. Give yourself a level cap. In some of the newer games it can be a bit harder to go with this restriction, but even so it might be worth a shot. Just simply designate a certain level cap that you don’t go over when facing certain challengers such as gym leaders, rival battles, and elite four members. I would say that you probably don’t want to be more than a couple of levels higher than the highest leveled Pokémon on the opponent’s team. Other wise you would probably just steamroll through. If you go past the cap by accident, just don’t use that Pokémon for that fight to keep yourself honest.
  3. Limit the Pokémon you use. You can take this in two different directions. The more extreme version of this is limiting the types of the Pokémon that you are allowed to use by banning certain stronger or more versatile types from your team, potentially even making it into a pseudo gym leader challenge run if taken far enough. If that is something that interests you than go for it. What I mean in terms of a more casual playthrough is that you should make it so you don’t rely on certain Pokémon. It is a fact of life that not all Pokémon were created equal. Some of them are just garbage while some are able to sweep teams by themselves without giving any party members room to breathe. I am not saying to use Pokémon that aren’t good, but rather try not to use Pokémon that are too good. Maybe steamrolling is fun the first time, but after that it becomes a bit boring. So just mix it up a little. What could go wrong? Okay a lot could go wrong, but that’s what makes it fun. I think.
  4. Limit usage of TMs. TMs or Technical Machines are a great way to ensure that certain Pokémon are able to have better movesets when they don’t gain anything from leveling up that feels useful for your current build. That is great, but there is always the danger of stocking up on good TMs to teach certain Pokémon repeatedly. There are many ways to do it in early games since you can buy them from stores or potentially get them through gambling. However, newer games make it so TMs are reusable and so this problem can become even more problematic. I am not saying not to use certain TMs, but try to limit how many Pokémon can use them on your team so they don’t end up with similar strategies. A little variety is nice after all.
  5. Limit item usage. Basically I just mean don’t heal stall with potions. It’s just sad. Either take your loss or get good. If you use other held items for strategic purposes then that is fine. It is also fine to heal during battle. However, instead of throwing potions at your Pokémon until your arm gets tired, why not try limiting your potion usage to your opponents so that it doesn’t become a war of attrition. Use the money for something else, like maybe some new clothes or something. I would also like to say limiting usage of status items should also be considered since when used properly X items can break the game.
  6. Attempt a Nuzlocke. You may have heard of this before. Typical rules are that you can’t use a Pokémon after it faints, you have to name them so that when they die you feel the pain of being a terrible trainer after having developed an emotional attachment with them, and limit yourself to catching the first Pokémon in a route that you encounter. It does sound scary, but it isn’t the worse so long as your prepare properly and have a good understanding of the game you are attempting to Nuzlocke. Truth be told, the suggestions before this one are all adapted from optional rules people incorporate into their Nuzlockes already. Does that make them masochists? Maybe. It is impressive nonetheless though what some of the hardcore ones are capable of pulling off (When I say ones I mean Nuzlockers, not masochists). However, clearly it might not be for you. There is a reason I put this last as this can be the hardest challenge for a Pokémon player. If it interests you though, maybe give it a shot. I do recommend doing some research in this field beforehand though. Just some friendly advice.
  7. Use Chikorita as a starter.

Actually, that will be all for today. Hope some of this was interesting. Maybe you already knew about all of this, but it was a fun learning experience for me so I thought I’d share. Oh, and don’t worry. I promise that next week will not be about Pokémon. Anyway take care and thanks for reading.

Continue reading “A Few Tips For Some Pokémon Fans”

Thoughts on Pokémon Final Bosses

I am in one of those moods again. I thought about something relating to the Pokémon series that I thought I would share with you. Now I want to just go and talk about what I consider as the end game bosses in the Pokémon games and what that boss actually means to you. The first generation’s main boss is undoubtedly your rival who at the end is the champion. You are constantly challenging each other to prove once and for all that you are the best trainer and the game is based around you trying to grow stronger. Team Rocket mainly serve as a antagonist to help you grow stronger, but they are a core component of the story. Even in that game, the Master Ball is a cool trophy that you don’t need to use. Of course if you want to make an argument against this idea and say that Mewtwo would be the final boss, I just want to bring up the fact that it isn’t much of a boss encounter if you just Master Ball it anyway. Let’s just call it a bonus hidden boss or something. Anyway the game feels like the lead up is meant to be about becoming the champion. The second generation mainly focuses on you trying to finish what your character from the first game started by finishing the Pokédex for real this time and proving that you can surpass him. Look the champion fight is fine in that generation, but it doesn’t not have the same impact as challenging Red. Again the legendary Pokémon are a sideshow and the main act is fighting to become the best, but you can’t really become the best by beating the champion because that isn’t the true champion. Red is the true champion fight and its a good fight too, so it makes sense that he is the final boss. You follow in his footsteps by putting an end to Team Rocket again, defeat the champion, follow his path to beating his rival and eventually defeating him. This works for me. Now, onto Generation III.

Generation III is a generation I have talked about in the past and talked about how I enjoy the battle systems and all that. I think it is definitely one of the better generations out there. It even has a pretty good champion fight against Steven, one of the more difficult champions to beat in my opinion. The problem is that I feel as though he is somewhat lacking as a final boss, not out of any fault of his own. First off, the fact that you have a father in the game is criminally underutilized. I think it could of made for a more interesting story investing more effort in the fact that you surpass your father as a trainer. That isn’t really a big issue though. The problem is the escalation of conflict. You end up performing incredible feats that end up saving the world from destruction, or at the very least the region and so resuming trainer battles after having defeated a legendary Pokémon seems a bit strange. Considering how high the stakes were raised you would think that the battle with the legendary Pokémon would be more meaningful, but no it can just be ignored. The next generation does something similar except it is even worse since they raised the stakes even higher by having a bunch of deities show up that you fight and then you just act as though you aren’t already the best trainer in the region because you only have seven gym badges. Don’t get me wrong, Cynthia is a good fight, but as far as I am aware she is not a god. Generation V did things better because it integrated the legendary battle more with the story and not just make it a sideshow. You build up your team and N acts as a true rival to you and you have a climatic battle only for Ghetsis to reveal his master plan and try to stop you once and for all. Also becoming champion is more meaningful because that is your way of showing the path you chose in your journey. It is symbolic of your growth as a character to become the best trainer. Well done. Then the sequels came out and decided to throw most of the clever storytelling out the window. Great.

Generation VII had another interesting storyline, well actually it was more like two interesting storylines depending on which game you played. The original games are more about your focus on going through the trials and the Pokémon League feels like a bonus that is tacked on for fun at the end. The real boss battle is the fight with Lusamine and her Pokémon after she has fused with her Ultra-Beast. They do a better job of making the story more relevant by having Lillie be with you from the start to give her more importance and make the final boss battle against her mother more meaningful. Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon take things a step further by having a final boss actually be a Pokémon for once as you have to fight Necrozma and his multiple forms before finally saving the whole region, which is pretty cool. They have that nice little mini episode at the end which has all the villains from previous generations challenging you through the power of the wormholes, but that is more of a sidequest rather than anything. Although if you did consider Giovanni as a hidden boss, I wouldn’t be opposed to it. I just can’t accept him as a final boss since he has barely anything to do with the story until the post-game. Overall, Generation VII did very well at making boss encounters feel like actual final encounters. Now, Generation VIII had an opportunity for that. It sort of worked. The final boss was hyped up from the beginning to be the champion Leon. I totally can roll with that. We’re rivals with his little brother so there is at least some connection there are they give us good anticipation for that fight. So why did they kill that momentum with that last minute villain plotline with that dude randomly being evil and Leon failing to stop Eternatus? The whole thing about Leon that made him cool was that he was undefeated, so it kind of kills the suspense when I manage to handle the beast he couldn’t tame because of my legendary plot armor. Yes, I own Pokémon Shield in case that joke didn’t make it obvious. I’m just saying they kind of dropped the ball on that one. Maybe the Eternatus fight should have been after the battle. Honestly, I think more Pokémon boss battles would be cool in the series. So far that has mainly come up in the spin-off series which is a shame. Maybe Gen IX might deliver on that but who knows. Alright, that about wraps up my thoughts. Hmm… I sort of feel like I forgot something. Oh well. Whatever it was, I’m sure it was nothing important. Bye now.

How I (Finally) Got Dead God

It feels like it took me forever, but I managed to get this finished. I finally got Dead God on one of my save files in The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth. It will probably be a while before I do something like this again, but I figured I might as well turn this into a big thing and talk about how I got the achievement. First off, I completed every challenge after they unlocked as there weren’t any that were a detriment to unlock. I also beat every completion mark on hard mode with every character including the tainted ones to unlock Death Certificate. Now as it turns out that was the only item I needed to see in order to complete my collection page. The reason was simple. I decided to leave a certain character for last to make sure I could guarantee seeing most of the items during my repeated playthroughs. As you may have guessed if you have read my blog posts this past month or so, that character is Tainted Eden. Since his gimmick switches his items so frequently I got every last item available by the time I unlocked Death Certificate. So, it should be easy to find right? Not really. The item pool for the secret room is a lot bigger than I realized and so finding it while getting lucky was very unlikely. So I came up with three strategies to increase my chances. Option one was to start with a character who has a rerolling item to try and exhaust the secret room pool. Option two was to snag Chaos to force it to appear in other pools so I could potentially reroll it. Option three was to potentially get Spindown Dice to find the item since it give the most control over any rerolling item. Guess which option it ended up being. Or you could just keep on reading. That works as well.

So to increase my odds, I obviously wanted to start with someone who could reroll items from the beginning as that would give me the best chance of doing these strategies in a somewhat consistent manner. So naturally I went with Isaac, and man was my luck terrible with him. While his reroll item is great, the problem is that it is not easy to gain charges for it without the right items, so there would be multiple times I would just be short of rerolling secret room items and my luck was also just really bad. So in my frustration I took a gamble and switched to playing as the Lost. The only real advantage his reroll item has is it has less charge time. There are certain risks such as items potentially disappearing half the time, but hey who doesn’t like to gamble every now and then. Unfortunately, I couldn’t do much about dying a bunch. I can’t even blame it on the character either. It was just a skill issue. Eventually though I got a decent run of items and made it to the Dark Room and I had Guppy’s Tail which increased the amount of items I found by a lot. So I explored until I found the Secret Room since this was my last chance to reroll for an item. I got lucky. A chest spawned that I could reroll for an item. I had to take the risk each time to see if it would disappear. It managed to successfully reroll the item after three attempts. On that last attempt I decided to grab the item since I felt like it might be worth it. The item was Spindown Dice. I was able to use it to reroll into the D6, Isaac’s reroll item from Mr. Mega. Since I had Schoolbag, I was able to use both at once which was nice. After that I explored the floor and found some cool items but nothing to help with finding Death Certificate. The only thing that was sort of useful was that I use Spindown Dice on Fruity Plum to get 4.5 Volt. So now defeating enemies helped with charging my dice. Unfortunately things weren’t looking great. I had exhausted every room and nothing to show for it. There was a sliver of hope however at turning this around.

Another item I got on this floor was the item Forget Me Now, which would allow me to restart the floor and potentially get another chance. The problem is that to use it, I would need to leave behind either Spindown Dice or the D6. It could possibly be very useful for secret rooms, but I wouldn’t be able to get anywhere unless I could guarantee an item in the secret room. Conversely, if I didn’t get lucky with what spawned as items, Spindown Dice could only do so much for me. Eventually I decided on Spindown Dice since that took away some of the randomness and if I was lucky I could always get another D6 from it. So I used the item to restart the floor and with Spindown Dice. I opened the first chest in the Dark Room to see what deals were up for grabs and it was Purgatory. Immediately my brain paused. To be sure, I went and looked up the collection page to be sure. I was right. Death Certificate was five spots away from Purgatory on the page meaning if I could use Spindown Dice five times, I could turn it into Death Certificate and complete the file once and for all. I had a limited amount of rooms, so I just had to hope I could gather enough charges using 4.5 Volt, but in the end after defeating the Lamb for the second time that run, I managed to get the last charge I needed and picked up Death Certificate completing the Collection Page. I used the item to get Sacred Heart just cause I wanted it and thanks to Dad’s Key showing up this run I was able to eviscerate Meta Satan and Delirium and finish the run. So in the end it was sort of a combination of strategies one and three that got me the item, plus a lot of luck as well. It was hard, but at least I have the save file to prove it. See you next time!

Sci-Fi Zelda

So before we begin today I just want to say a couple things about the new Saints Row. It isn’t very good as everyone is aware and that is because we once again have a reboot with absolutely no substance behind it. You see, I haven’t talked about reboots at length, because I don’t feel it is worth the effort. It’s pretty simple. A good reboot/remake takes some of the more refined game elements of the modern video game genre and incorporates them into an older franchise so that it true to the games roots and adapts it to a more modern setting. Other reboots/remakes are simply cash grabs, and pretty obvious ones at that. It is like they are not even trying anymore. Although, to go easy on Volition for a moment here, I kind of understand their desperation. After all, they managed to peak nearly ten years ago with Saints Row IV and have since done nothing remarkable. They kept turning their GTA clone into something more and eventually they reached the final frontier, space, and couldn’t figure out where to go from there. They probably had trouble incorporating the gang into space bounty hunters. It’s a shame since I would’ve totally paid money for that. That only delays the issue though. It is seriously such a challenge to have a series go to space and then come back from it successfully. You might be wondering what all this has to do with Zelda. Well, I wanted to highlight there is a potential danger of this in any series. Although, Nintendo has for the most part handled sci-fi elements in their games rather well.

There are already multiple Nintendo franchises with sci-fi elements. The Star Fox and Metroid series both involve fighting enemies in space and have firmly established themselves as part of the Sci-Fi genre. In fact, thinking about it, there are very few that feel as though they still to a fantasy setting. The only two that feel strictly fantasy-like off the top of my head are The Legend of Zelda and the Fire Emblem series. Although these other series that already have sci-fi elements such as Pikmin and Mother started out with that as an established part of the series. It is a lot harder to introduce it into a series that has not dealt with it before. To be fair, Mario has done it, but Mario could just about make a comeback from anything so it is a little unfair to compare him. There are honestly a lot of risk with trying to take The Legend of Zelda series into space. After all who knows how Link would fair in such an environment? Not to mention Nintendo tends not to take big risks with certain characters like Link. That may be why the closest Nintendo has ever come to doing that was when that kid with a mask decided to bring space to him. To be honest, I wouldn’t be so hung up about this, if they didn’t keep teasing us with it. At first, it was pretty standard magic items as well as sword fights. You know, typical fantasy stuff. But then it had to slowly start incorporating more and more cool technology into the fold. Especially in the latest release of DLC for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. They are teasing us with all this lost technology to the point where I want it so bad.

Look, they have this whole storyline about them finding all this lost technology and putting it to use, but we never see what happens when that time period thrived. We know it did at some point, but the question is when? It is clear that the Zelda franchise allows for technological advancements due to the Future Timeline where they have technology such as ships and trains. I know it is possible to develop them further. I just want to see it in at least one game. They had hints of it in that sandy area in Skyward Sword as well which made exploring the dungeons more interesting. That was the beginning of the timeline and yet there was still technology that could be used at some point in time more advanced then what the game had to offer. Listen, I know we already had some sci-fi elements in the latest game, but can we maybe get a little more. Look, it’s time I admit that truthfully the whole reason I came up with this post is because I want to see Link wielding a lightsaber. Obviously it wouldn’t be called a lightsaber because of copyright and all that, but it would still look pretty cool in my opinion. I have been getting a taste of cool stuff from the series and so I just want to see things taken a step further with him wielding a cool new blade. Is that too much to ask? Probably, but a man can dream. Besides if they could get Sora in Smash Bros. successfully, then they can do anything they put their minds to if they try. Money probably helps with that too.

Hunt or be Hunted in Hard Difficulties

Hey there. I’m here again to harp on about having a hard time in hard mode. However, I’ve had it with hunting through halls that are heralded by haunting heads, horsemen and harbingers of heaven and hell. I have been through some heaping helpings of hurt in these past few hours and I can’t help but head into games heavier on hunting and hoarding. Having said that have I happened to show how I hunt in these hardcore hikes? No? Well how would you like to hear what happens? Not that having a hand in the matter was happening. Hunting is how I happen to help myself to herds of harmful creatures and they help feed my horrible hoarding habits. However, I happen to hate myself and hunt in the harder difficulties which can hurt when health is harder to hold on to and healing on the go is hell. So I hide and hide until I either heavily hide a harrowing about of traps or I help myself to hunting hoards by going head by head. However, I have to hope that I don’t become hunted myself since if the hoard hunts me down, then I have to hightail it and hide until they hopefully can’t hack me down. Hit points and health can be handled with health potions and herbs but that can only help so much if you can’t handle getting hit. I happen to be the hardheaded type that hurls myself headfirst in helpless hurdles without a hard hat. It can hurt being headstrong, but I can’t help myself.

Have you ever heard of Monster Hunter? I happened upon this series and have hunted in it every so often. My hoarding habits have been further heightened by honing my hammer and helping myself to a heaping of parts to help my hammer and headgear and heavy armor withstand the harm from harder and harder monsters. Health is high especially for higher level hunts where hitting them and hurting them must be handled with haste. After all, hunts tend to have an hour or so time limit so if the hunt isn’t handled well, then you have to head home with nothing. Half the time I am so headstrong I head into hunting with my hammer over my head while hopping of a cliff and half my health is gone after getting hit since the monster is higher level and my armor is hanging on by a thread since it has no upgrades. I am helplessly hasty aren’t I? So I head away to heal up and hunt it again until I have the victory. As it happens, hammer isn’t my best, but I’ll go in the Hub to hunt with the hammer because I have fun hunting hordes anyway. Even if I’m helpless and have no health potions and can’t hide, I will hammer away. Seriously though, Hub hoard hunts can be hell.

You might have heard that I am headstrong, but that is hardly true all the time. Hiding is a habit of mine since I happen to like higher leveled fights due to my hotheadedness. So I hype myself up for higher leveled hunts and when I don’t need to hasten myself to head out into hell itself, I hide in the hedges and hinder the enemy to have a breather and heal. I hate having to do this, but how else can I have a chance at hacking at such a high health bar without being humbled by it’s high level. Hit and run is how things get done here. That’s how it has to be until I have a habit of not heading into hell so often. Yes it’s hell because heaven isn’t allowed on hard mode. If I get humiliated in a hunt, I keep going until I am the head hunter and I happen to hack away all the hit points , then I can head home with my head held high and a heavy pouch packed with herbs I hoarded heading towards the target of the hunt. This is not happening just in Monster Hunter but any hunts that happen to be hard to handle are ones I have to handle. I hate having to hide away and heal due to my headstrong and hot blooded nature, but I hate having to give up the hunt and so I have to head into the hallowed halls of hell as often as I have to since it is a habit of mine to hunker down and handle things if I have to, no matter how I have to do it. I may have the high ground, I may hide and heal while being hawk-eyed and hushed, I may have to hammer down some hurt on those who have the chutzpah to hunt me. It’ hunt or be hunted and I will have the head of my hunt at the end of it all. Have a happy hunt everybody and here’s to being hunters and heroes.

Tainted Eden and The Luck of The Draw

Yeah, this time I won’t pretend this isn’t a post about The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth. Lately I have spent most of my time trying to finally finish the Repentance DLC that came out a while back and I have almost finished it at this point. Currently I am missing three items on the collection page as well as three completion marks for a certain character. Once I achieve all that, I won’t have to play with game for a while. I might do some runs for fun, but I will at least have everything unlocked. Now the one character who I have yet to finish is Tainted Eden. The reason for this is because his unlocks are not exactly desirable for completion. One of them is his Delirium unlock which causes secret rooms and I AM ERROR rooms to potentially have glitched items that have random effects. The other is the Beast unlock that gives the item TMTRAINER which causes ALL future items to be random. So since these could potentially destroy any run I decided that it would probably be better if I did these unlocks last, since that way it would be a lot easier to finish my completion page without those variables interfering. So far it seems to be working. However, the main reason was because of Tainted Eden’s unique mechanic. You see Eden himself was always meant to be randomized in terms of stats and starting items, but his Tainted counterpart takes it a step further. Now, things are even more random because every item that you pick up will be rerolled into something else once you get hit. That means that your run could change at any time and you just have to adjust.

That isn’t to say there are no rules to it. Unless you reroll into Chaos, all the items you reroll will be from the item room you originally got the item from meaning that it will keep taking from the same pool each time. That can make taking from certain pools more dangerous than others since certain items can potential ruin a run. For instance, I did a run with Mega Satan that I failed after twelve attempts because I kept getting unlucky with rerolls. So I would like to give some advice for using Tainted Eden. The first thing is that you should not go for curse rooms. While some of the items can be useful, there are also some that can really destroy a run. This also goes for red chests since they have a similar item pool. You see, Cursed Eye makes completion marks a bit harder to deal with since you may have to restart boss fights without any of your health. In fact, it completely removed me from an attempt at Boss Rush and I had to try again later. Another thing is rerolling into Dead Cat where you are one hit away from death is quite painful to struggle through. Yeah, that happened. It is usually better to go for angel rooms over devil rooms since you can reroll into Holy Mantle which can be very useful for surviving rooms without losing health. They also allow you to not have to give up health which is a very important aspect since health items can be rerolled away at any time. Sacrifice rooms may be advised if you have the health to spare. Also see if you can get Birthright if you can, since that can tone down some of the randomness.

The biggest thing you need to worry about is trying not to get hit so as to not get an unfavorable synergy, so finding items that can help with that are an option. Items with flight are especially useful. Don’t take the Sword of Damocles if you can, because you will not last. I learned that one the hard way. However, what might be one of the best things is getting an active item from the shop. You see, active items will reroll into active items from the same item pool, meaning that you could reroll into Glowing Hourglass allowing for potentially infinite retries if you handle it properly. You will reset back to your previous build and try again. If you get hit again, you can reroll again over and over again. Just make sure that the item is charged otherwise it will not work. It is kind of like a pseudo-Birthright kind of thing that allows you to keep your previous build. The most important thing to remember is that soul hearts cannot be rerolled so keep some of them as a life saving measure to make sure you don’t rely too much on red hearts. Now, I will keep plugging away at this game until I finish it. I don’t necessarily expect anyone else to do that, but maybe this will be useful to somebody. Part of this is mainly to help me focus my thoughts before my next attempts, so let’s hope something good comes out of it. Now, at this rate if things go well you will probably hear about it from me at some point. For now, let’s jump back into it at try to find some control to the madness. I will get through this, because there is no way that I am stopping at 99% completion. NOT. A. CHANCE.

Let’s Talk About Salt

Looks like it’s time for another late night blog post everybody. Let’s talk about something random again today. This time let’s talk about one of the most common things that can happen when playing a videogame and that is salt. Obviously I am not talking about sodium chloride here, but that feeling you get in the back of your head that says if something happens one more time to cause you an unnecessary death, then you will throw your controller at the wall. You see getting salty is one of those emotions that I think is important to playing a game. The reason being that at its core, gaming is quite an emotional experience and for some the most important thing about the activity is being able to use it as a stress reliever instead of an actual punching bag. Let’s face it, I’m not about to go to the gym every time I am feeling stressed about something. There are other outlets at my disposal so why not use them? I would only be doing a disservice to myself if I didn’t find way to cope with it. Not to say that I personally feel any stress of any kind okay? Anyway, the reason why the ability to get salty is important to me is because it indicates a certain level of passion for the game. You cannot feel salty about a game that you didn’t have any expectations for in the first place. Sometimes games use a little bit of RNG to make you question every single decision you ever made. Let me give you an example.

Now for those of you who have been following this blog, first off I would like to say thank you. I am not really very good at expressing myself, but do know I appreciate that people are reading these things. Anyway, those people may know that I have enjoyed to a certain degree playing The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth and the corresponding DLC that was released for it. I don’t know if I could consider it my favorite game, but it is definitely one of the ones that I have played the most. I am currently encroaching on 1000 hours of playtime right now so….. yeah. Even with all of that time, I still haven’t completely finished it yet and that has honestly been how I have spent most of my videogame time for the past few months. Those past few months were filled with a lot of deaths to be honest. Don’t ask me how many because I lost count. I will say that the number of times I died as Tainted Lost is well into the hundreds though. that isn’t to say I haven’t made any progress. I am slowly but steadily clearing each completion mark with each character. Also, before you ask let me say that I did finish Tainted Lost. I’m committed, what can I say? Anyway you are probably wondering how salt come into play here. It comes up a lot actually, especially considering how good I am at choking away good runs. However, that is usually do to my own skill so I can only be a little upset for a while. It happens. What I can’t forgive is what happened earlier today.

I was trying to go for a particular possible in the came that requires you to go through an alternate route to reach it. You need two particular items to combine to have access to this boss. Now I had a pretty decent start to the run and was able to safely make my way to the area where the second piece was kept. I managed to grab it and was running away from the thing that chases me down during the sequence. As I was running, a trap door opened in the ground and to my surprise, the door wasn’t locked. I thought that I might as well check it out, so I went down to see what I could find. Turns out that was a big mistake. You see, the game spawned a key in that room that I needed to clear it, but once I left the room by going into the crawlspace hatch, it no longer felt the need to spawn a key for me to progress and it also deleted the one I had for the puzzle. Not ideal. I tried to bomb the rocks to maybe find away across, but to no avail. That meant I was stuck and doomed to die. Now unfortunately, there was no way out of this one unless I had an extra life. I did not. I lost a perfectly good run because I accidentally softlocked the game so I couldn’t progress. I just had to stand tend and suffer torment until the moment I died. I can usually chock up my deaths to bad luck or me being dumb but this felt so unfair. Never have I felt so cheated before. In fact I was so salty that I came up with this entire blog post just to vent about this single instance. Had I been in the right mindset, I would have taken a screenshot, but as I was upset at the time it sort of slipped my mind. Oh well I guess. This won’t stop me from playing, especially when I am so close to success, but my goodness was that annoying. Thanks for listening. Take care now.

What is a Story?

I want to ask a question. What is a story? I don’t mean what is the definition, but what is a story supposed to be? Many games use stories very differently and truthfully some are a lot better at it than others. There are some games that have spent a lot of time developing an interesting story, but have maybe spent less time on gameplay with maybe limited movements or commands implemented to make sure that you can engage with the story. Some games put so little effort into the story that you can honestly forget about it entirely during actual gameplay, which is usually fine since those games tend to be really fun to play. So what is the goal for a story in a game then? Is it supposed to serve as a backdrop to a game or is it meant to be the main focus? It’s kind of hard to say for sure but I personally think that the best way to experience a story is when you can experience it

Continue reading “What is a Story?”

Thoughts on the Terastal Phenomenon

Today they finally dropped some news on the Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet games with new features being revealed as well as new Pokémon. Truth be told I am pretty excited for these games, but the thing I think I am the most excited about is strangely enough the new gimmick this generation presents us with, and I am not talking about the open world. I am talking about the fact that Pokémon in this region have the ability to Terastallize which manages to further boost their type and can make their moves stronger. The STAB ( same type attack bonus) moves have never been so important since now they can give you a greater edge in battle solely for being the same type. The thing that interests me the most about it is that the typing of the Pokémon can differ from its Tera type. That means that you could be battling a Pokémon and it could change types midway through the battle. It is very likely that you could get a serious edge if you play your cards right. If I’m being honest this gimmick feels like a mix between Z-moves and Gigantamax but with potentially a better balance and more possibilities to work off of and explore. I don’t know for sure how this mechanic will go, but it definitely looks cool. I just felt like I needed to talk about this real quick. I’m real excited for these games so I hope that November comes fast.