Looking back over past installments of this column, I’m surprised I haven’t given Bianca any love yet. I mean, in Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride, the game in which she first appears, she literally becomes your wife. Assuming you make the correct choices, that is.
Of course, you have two other options for who to wed in that game. But as someone who grew up as whatever the middle-class equivalent of a country bumpkin is, Bianca spoke to me right from the first moment I met her. And I knew right from that first meeting that I was going to wed her.
Them other girls dun’t matter, y’hear? Well, they do, but not right now. Bianca!
Continue reading Waifu Wednesday: Bianca Whitaker
Refia is an interesting character in Final Fantasy canon, because she didn’t exist in the original version of the game she’s from — in fact, none of the protagonists from the 3D remake of Final Fantasy III did.
Indeed, the original Famicom version of Final Fantasy III instead features a player-named party of indeterminately gendered “Onion Kids” — thereby kicking off the series’ occasional, inexplicable obsession with the vegetable in the process. Refia didn’t show up until Matrix Software brought out the Nintendo DS version of Final Fantasy III in 2006 — which was also the first time the game came West.
Well, just because she wasn’t there from the very beginning doesn’t make her any less worthwhile as a character! So let’s take a moment to celebrate Refia’s contribution to one of the most well-known RPG series in the world.
Continue reading Waifu Wednesday: Refia
It’s time for a whole new Final Fantasy — this time the third installment in its PSP incarnation, itself based off the Nintendo DS remake by Matrix Software.
I was all set to start recording these on actual hardware (PlayStation TV in the case of the PSP titles) but regrettably I discovered that Square Enix of Europe has been… less than fastidious in keeping their back catalogue updated with PSTV support, so we’re emulating again, I’m afraid — and we will be when FFIV rolls around, too, since that doesn’t work here in Europe either!
Ah well. It’s the game itself that matters, and Final Fantasy III is certainly an interesting and important installment in the series, so let’s get started on a whole new journey. And don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube to stay up to date with the Final Fantasy Marathon and all my other series!
This article is one chapter of a multi-part Cover Game feature!
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Pokémon is the biggest media franchise in the world at the time of writing. It’s certainly a far cry from being either overlooked or underappreciated. So why explore it in depth here on MoeGamer?
Because despite it being the world’s biggest media franchise, there’s not a ton of in-depth analysis out there. Sure, commercial sites will fill their frontpages with clickbait “How To Catch Shiny Pokémon” and “How To Evolve Farfetch’d to Sirfetch’d” guide articles, but actual in-depth looks at the game are surprisingly thin on the ground.
So I thought I’d do my bit to correct that. Beginning with an extensive look at the history of the series: where it came from, how it became such a global phenomenon, and what has led us to Sword and Shield. Let’s begin!
Continue reading Pokémon Sword and Shield: Introduction and History
I haven’t had as much time as I’d like to play Dragon Quest recently, but I took the time to play some at lunchtime today, and it reminded me of some things I’d like to talk about.
What I’m going to talk about today relates to the series as a whole, but with the release of newest installment Dragon Quest XI looming at the time of writing, it’s particularly pertinent to mention these things, given some of the issues that have been brought up by recent reviews.
So let us ponder a core aspect of not just Dragon Quest, but of the type of RPG that Dragon Quest went on to inspire. Let us contemplate grinding!
Continue reading Delving into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #5
I think I’m nearing the end of Hand of the Heavenly Bride. It’s just a feeling I have.
As we’ve previously discussed, Dragon Quest is not generally a series for making a huge deal out of significant narrative moments, preferring to allow you to draw your own meaning from them rather than attempting to force you to feel a particular way through lengthy cutscenes.
This doesn’t make those significant moments any less meaningful or effective, however — it’s just a markedly different treatment of these events than you’d find in many other games.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #4
It’s a slightly belated new episode of the MoeGamer Podcast!
Both Chris and I had some unfortunate technical issues with our previous attempt to record this podcast, so we ended up having to do it all over again. We present to you the Definitive Edition of this particular episode!
I’m also pleased to announce that there is now an audio-only version of the podcast available on Soundcloud, and it’s been submitted to iTunes and a few other places. The show will continue to be presented in video format here and on YouTube as well, so if you enjoy watching as well as listening, never fear.
Continue reading The MoeGamer Podcast: Episode 7 – Touching is Good
Exciting things have been happening in the world of Dragon Quest V, and I am thoroughly enraptured with this game.
I can’t remember the last RPG that managed to make one’s adventure feel so simultaneously personal and meaningful to the broader context in which the narrative unfolds. But Hand of the Heavenly Bride does a wonderful job at this — and now I’m into the game’s third (and, I believe, final) act, things are escalating considerably while still remaining tightly focused on the protagonist and his family.
Let’s take a closer look, then! Doubtless you’ve already figured out that spoilers likely abound in this series, but I’ll warn you once more just in case.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #3
I’m about ten hours deep into Hand of the Heavenly Bride at the time of writing… and it’s been a highly enjoyable adventure so far.
Last time, we talked a bit about how the prologue chapter of the game represents an interesting exploration of childhood and fatherhood.
Now that my adventure “proper” is well underway, I thought I’d start examining some of the interesting things this fifth installment in the series is doing.
Continue reading Delving into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #2
I’ve been making good progress through Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen so far. I think I might be nearing the end of the game. Or at least the end of the main story.
So far I’ve been playing for about twenty hours or so, and the game has provided a pleasant amount of variety during that time. It hasn’t really got what I’d call especially complex at any point, but sometimes that can be refreshing; it allows you the freedom to enjoy what mechanics there are, and more importantly, the other aspects of the game such as its world design and characterisation.
Today I wanted to talk a little about Chapters of the Chosen’s more “traditional” aspects, and how they make it quite a refreshing experience when played from a modern perspective.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen – #3