Welcome back

Thanks for visiting one of the few .link domains not serving malware. (if it is, someone else dropped it here).  Haha seriously though, welcome back.

This is another domain populated with data from the FuntimeBliss.com forums.  I liken this one similar to how I ran pwncake, when I still had that domain URL.  I am still dabbling on technical stuff between work and playing games at home when not tinkering with something.

Here’s hoping the search engines don’t spider bomb the site by re-crawling front page content.  We are running out of 2017 so enjoy the countdown.  As I mentioned on the other sites, I’ll back fill some of the forum threads since end of year 2016.

.hack//G.U. Last Recode

About 9 years later, all 3 of these G.U. games are on PC and PS4.  I grabbed the Steam version of .hack//G.U. Last Recode today and it’s 40 GB install is downloading.

The redone graphics look really nice.  I am a bit cautious of the increased XP gain and easier boss fights, but it was a fun series and I hope to see the original 4 games get redone, and most of all, some new content, short of the 4th episode they added to G.U. for this release.  This version is still a single player faux-MMO and I’m good with that.  Eventually an online game that doesn’t bomb would be cool, but by all means, take your time and get it right.

I’m glad to see this came out as it caught me by surprise. From the look of the steam forums, this game is selling, so I’d love to see support for the series continue, after such a long break.

As you can see from the thread history, I bumped the old thread for about 9 years ago to note this PC remaster.

I played a few hours last night, between watching the console disc recap videos and playing the start of Episode 01. I played 2.5 hours and very much of that was cutscenes and info to game dynamics. Keeping in mind I read all the game and forum community content, as you can get extra areas, art and other bonuses from doing so.

Last night I played in VR, via using BigScreen with my Oculus Rift. Think of it as playing on a giant curved LCD, in a virtual room. The game ran very smooth. Considering when I last played the games, it was on a PS2 over CRT using S-Video. Playing the remastered edition @ 1080P is a treat. Maps are legible along with the world and character designs looking incredible versus PS2 era. The actual game is not VR at all, but playing on the virtual screen is pretty dope.

I left the graphic options to default. Essentially high except shadows and water, iirc. Load times are also quite short running from my SSD and that’s always appreciated. I have not seen any performance or stability issues so far either. I am playing with a Sony DualShock 4 using the licensed USB dongle along with DS4Windows driver for Xbox 360 mapping.

I did not notice a huge detriment to battles yet based on the XP boost. I feel like the original game also had quick battles and meters, but my memory could be fuzzy. I enjoyed these games before and having the option to play them in such a crisp environment, is really cool. I cannot argue with the $50 asking price, since you get all 3 of the .G.U. chapters and the newly added 4th one.
You can play with cheat mode if you want to breeze out maxed through the story. I’m playing normal. Also you can pick any chapter, console disc or the parody content from the main menu. It’s nice that the menu select is part of the game, as this makes it much easier to pick your chapter when in a full screen window, versus a steam popup form.

There are keyboard controls based off WSAD, but they are not really clearly defined when you start playing. I tried to finger fumble on the laptop since I don’t have a gamepad with me at the moment. Arrow keys work like your targeting system, but to be honest, play it with a dual-analog stick gamepad if you have the option.

I’m playing a few games at the moment but am near the end of Episode 1 of G.U.. I can say the avatar fights are way better than they were on PS2. I remember cussing and replying them to clear the fight. I am currently around level 37 (cap of 50 for episode 1).

It kind of funny playing in The World, logging out to the desktop environment to check email and forums. I hope to see some more games made for the series. It’s a good time and if you like story heavy RPGs, pick this up. PS4 digital or physical and Steam digital option for PC.

If you switch audio sources while playing, your best bet will be to save, then go back out of said episode to the Title select menu. Audio should restore back to your current audio device.
I run into this switching from Rift view and audio, back to headphones and external display. I see this with fairly many games but ones like Final Fantasy XIV would require me to do a full logout. I cannot think of other games stuck with audio shuffling at the moment but enjoy that you can stay in the same application via the .hack chapter select core menu. Especially for the sake of not losing active window and display.

Mario Odyssey

Fun random fact: I used to have some bike parts named Odyssey, so I got used to the spelling. Back on topic, this latest Mario game is exceptionally good and enjoyable.

I played over vacation and as of writing have 500+ stars and have played some of the hard mode post-main story content. I think the best attribute of the game is being enjoyable, while not being too difficult, until you complete the main story line. That being said, I also have the amiibos and that means with Wedding Peach, that I can jump back up to 6 health at any time with a few seconds available, even in boss fights.

I tried playing the Mario Galaxy games but did not find myself enjoying them enough to complete them. Perhaps it was the Wiimote controls, I’m not sure as it has been some time since I tried those games out. Along those lines, you do get extra control functionality with the JoyCons detached, via wiggling. Most of the time it’s not necessary to clear an area but can make some challenges easier. I largely played with JoyCons detached in Odyssey. Tablet mode works great too if you are away from a TV and your Dock.

I very briefly tried multiplayer but can say using a second controller to control Cappy, does make it a more detailed experience, since some jumps trying to time hat jumps solo, would be difficult compared to working with a second player. As you progress, there are some online scoreboard side-games too.

Control options and moves progress as you do in the game. You can do most all of them immediately, but as you play the relevant usage will come to you. You can view all of these in the Select / – menu.

Seriously I’m ending the review there. The game is really well constructed and is not a chore to play. Personally I feel like most studios are releasing grind-quest games with no actual enjoyment or care in their processes, so this Mario game from Nintendo is a long-needed breath of fresh air.
I have heard more than one person tell me they have an XB1 or PS4 that they are bored with. By all means is this is you, grab a switch and play Mario and or Zelda. Then look forward to more content coming down the line. If you are tired of playing math simulators, Nintendo and indie devs are where the heart of quality gaming lies.

As always, I purchased my own copy of this game. I have no oversight or compensation for the opinions expressed here. If I ever land a job with Nintendo or any sort of compensation, I will inform of such. Have fun! I do suggest a Switch for the holiday season if you don’t have one, and if you do, I think you would be hard-pressed to not enjoy Mario Odyssey.

I played pretty heavily since a midnight release on 10/27, got 500 stars and there are still plenty of things I did not complete. There are classic platforming sections as well as the 3D world content. This is a game made by people who wanted you to enjoy it and also played it themselves for pleasure.