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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Game to Buy: The World Ends With You (DS)



This DS RPG, developed by Square-Enix, is set in Shibuya. The plot: Live 7 days, while completing missions each day, in order to get your life back. The time limit is only story-wise, though (there's no Dead Rising complex here), but it's a game made by Squeenix, so it's never that simple. The story caught me by surprise several times, and the characters actually have a bit of a unique quality to them...besides our main character, though, who suffers amnesia and acts like a douche for the first couple of days. I guess I'd be a bit emo too, if I were named Neku, but whatever.



The graphics and atmosphere of the game is outstanding. The design matches the art styles of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, but with an obvious pop-culture flair about it. Character sprites are vivid and quite enjoyable, and proves that 2D can still kick ass. The music of the game is difinitive, and is the most unique soundtrack I have ever heard in a DS game. Pop, Rock, Rap, Hip-Hop, Techno, it's all there, and it sounds beautiful. I only wish I could give a sample to you all. Oh wait, I can.


The World Ends With You


Gameplay...surprisingly, this nearly turned me away from finishing the game, but that's because I almost didn't give myself enough time to adjust. Essentially, your playing on two screens, with two characters, using two different control schemes. You control Neku with the touch screen, using different gestures to move around and act on the field depending on your "pins" you have equipped, which is basically your weapons in combat. Dozens of possible pins, almost all of which can be leveled up over time in several ways, and even possibly evolve into different, more powerful pins. Your partner is shown on the top screen, with which you use the control pad or face buttons to input attacking and defensive manuvers. The difficulty is controlling both characters at the same time; while you have the option to have your character act automatically, the command inputs really call for a manual touch in order to achieve Fusion Techniques, which hurt all enemies and heal your characters. Oh, and I forgot to mention that HP is shared between both you and your partner, meaning that you can't just sacrifice your top character and fight on your own. It's a bit difficult your first time through, but give it time, adjust the difficulty if you have to, and I swear you will learn to enjoy it. Then again, I played this game after months of putting down my DS, so those with more experience should fair better.



The extras plugged into the game can be just as enjoyable as the main game, once you delve deep enough into it. Once you beat the game, you still have plenty of work to do to get 100% completion, so replay value is definetly there...hard to pull off in an RPG, in my opinion. There's also "Tin Pin Slam," basically a game of Marbles with the pins you've collected, which is multiplayer. You can also set up shop, and other players with TWEWY can buy items you've gained from your game, and visa-versa. Mingle Mode allows you to gain Pin Points, used to level up your pins, by picking up nearby DS Wi-Fi signals from any game. There's even a "Shutdown" mode, which gives you Pin Points between saves while you have the power off. It actually encourages you to turn off the game for a time...you don't see that very often, and while you don't have to use it, some of your pins can only level up by getting Shutdown Points.


I would love to have some of these...

If you like RPGs, and you have a DS, you most likely already have this game. If you haven't pick this up yet, do yourself a favor and pick this one up. 5 out of 5, easily. I'LL ADD IT TO THE PILE. (You'll get that one later.)

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