Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Digital withdrawal

Nothing good ever happens in Nier, only things that are slightly less worse for your ham fisted interference. For example, in the first act you find two siblings, the younger of which is pining for his mother (who the older one knows is dead). After some wandering around in an ancient laboratory full of angry robots, you find her corpse right next to the body of her lover that she abandoned her children to be with. I told the kids the truth; the younger one didn't believe me and the older one already knew and was protecting his kid brother. No harm done, yet. It turns out that less than a year later the older brother was crushed by an Iron Giant clone with a shade as a hat. The younger brother never really got over it, recruits you to take care of this killer robot, then go crazy when you finally do. Even the main character backs away slowly, and his first answer to confusion is to hit things with his sword. Since then I have wiped out an entire town of innocents to save the three members of the party, killed a tree that held all the memories of mankind and wrecked most of my home town in the name of saving one person who has probably been dead for five years. It's depressing, and I have a feeling that none of this is going to end well, but that is actually points in Nier's favor. Nothing here is by the numbers, which keeps it interesting in spite of its failings.

I would try to finish it tonight, but there is another Street Fighter ranbat schedule and Puzzle Quest 2 comes out tomorrow. Puzzle Quest was absolute crack in digital form, stealing hours at a time and giving nothing in return besides a growing backlog of other gamers. The less said about the space based sequel the better, but hopes are high for this one. I think shrinking the scope down to that of the first Diablo is a good thing, more suited to gameplay that is best in small doses. I just hope the music is better, there is only so much MIDI-evil music one person can take before going crazy.

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