Rundown (11/12-11/18) Ultra Gripe Leads to Ultra Delay!

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On Friday, I received my copy of Pokemon Ultra Moon, and have since invested 10 hours into the game. Normally that would mean I would be able to get my review out fairly quickly, but I kept encountering a very unique problem. You see, prior to the release of Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, I assumed that Pokemon Bank would be comparable from day one. It is not. Because of this, I was unable to transfer the specific Pokemon I had bred for a team that I intended to use in Ultra Moon. Now, for those asking why I don’t just build a new team or replicate the one I wanted in Ultra Moon, the answer is quite simple. I don’t want to put myself through this rigamarole yet again.

Pokemon Ultra Moon is so similar to the original, and my memories of Moon as so clear, that it seems like I am undergoing a repeat playthrough half the time, and with the way I play Pokemon, repeat playthroughs generally stink, as I feel the need to catch every Pokemon not currently registered in my Pokedex, and rarely leave an area until I catch everything in it. It is a mentality that led me to enjoying Alpha Sapphire and Black more than any other games in the mainline series. In Alpha Sapphire, by using Pokemon Bank, I was able to complete my Pokedex, give myself a complete team, and go through the game with ease. In Black, there was a far smaller Pokedex to complete and doing so was more manageable than it was in any other game in the series. Ramble aside, this means that my review of Ultra Moon will be delayed, likely until December 13th.

Moving onto the game news, I do not talk about this very often, but as a company Sega have been remarkably bad at maintaining the many franchises they established over the years, resulting in a long series of dormant IPs that the company clearly has no real desire to explore. Yet they have been rather fond of the Shining series, which most people would better remember as Shining Force, Sega’s alternative to Fire Emblem.

The series has actually received very regular installments since its inception, varying between action RPGs and tactical RPGs, but Sega has not localized any of these titles outside of Asia in about a decade. However, with the upcoming release of the latest entry in the series, Shining Resonance Refrain, apparently Sega is looking into bringing the series over to the west. Which would be nice. I mean, I doubt a lot of people would care or really recognize that the game is part of a series, but it’s a lot better than when Sega was reporting YouTube videos that discussed Shining Force to improve the SEO viability of an Asian exclusive Shining game. Yes. That actually happened.

With the recent release of Danganronpa V3, I personally reached the conclusion that the series was definitively closed and would not continue in any major way. However, that does not appear to be the case. As series developer Spike Chunsoft recently put up a job listing for somebody to work on modeling and texture work for an upcoming 3D action Danganronpa game. Effectively confirming that another Danganronpa spin-off is in development. Perhaps Danganronpa: The Final Episode or something of the sort. As a fan of the series, it is inevitable that I will check the game out upon its release, but for now, all I can do it wait for more information to be provided.

There was also a general fervor about EA being the sort of company one would expect EA to be. A corporation built to appease shareholders at the cost of its consumers, and willing to create an exploitative title that is hidden under the guise of the latest entries in a series of games based on one of the most lucrative intellectual properties in the world. Star Wars Battlefront II (2017) released this past Friday and was set to be a horribly balanced game that exists more to encourage people to purchase money in exchange for difficult to obtain unlockables that give players a competitive edge. This garnered the expected reaction, but somehow more justifiably vicious from the fanbase and even some of the greater media, resulting in EA issuing a vague and wishy washy statement claiming that they will be “turning off all in-game purchases”.

While this may be cause for celebration, EA did not specify how exactly this will be handled. That alone is worrisome, but it is also worth noting that the day of this announcement, the CEO of EA had a phone call with the CCO of Disney about Battlefront II. This is alleged information, but it paints the story in a different light. That Disney was aware of what EA was doing with the game and they were not happy to see their IP treated in such a manner. It is possible that Disney will oversee the monetization of the game going forward, limiting what EA can do and not do, and will hopefully result in a better balanced and less exploitative game. Well, it could.

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