First Impressions: Kingdom Hearts RE: Chain of Memories

As a long time fan of the game (having beaten the first game on PS2, PS3 and more recently PS4) I have wanted to play through all of the games, and with the release of the Kingdom Hearts All in One package for the PS4, I have the opportunity to do just that.

I’ve already experienced Kingdom Hearts 1,2 and the “cut-scene only” games (the oddly named Re:Coded and 358/2 Days) as they have been previously released on the PS3 as the “Final Mix” but I never got around to playing Chain of Memories until today.

I have some thoughts.

The gameplay so far is nearly the same: go to an area (in this case rooms) filled with Heartless, whack ’em with the keyblade and move on.

What doesn’t make sense is you aren’t just running around madly pressing “X” like the first Kingdom Hearts. In this game you have a deck of cards that you use and cycle through to deal out damage (you see what I did there? I’m hilarious).

The card mechanic is… well interesting. I still haven’t figured out how the hell it’s actually supposed to work other than you target an enemy, they deal their card and you’re supposed to throw out a higher numbered card (like playing War). At least that’s what I’ve gathered so far.

What doesn’t makes sense about this game mechanic is that the enemies are still running around like the previous Kingdom Hearts game while I’m moving around AND messing with the card mechanic.

So I just end up pressing “X” like crazy anyway, and running through my hand of cards, then healing because it’s my last card in the hand, then focusing to get a new hand.

All while heartless are still moving around and hitting me.

Personal opinion but I think the card mechanic would work better in a turn-based fight, rather than the hack and slash style I’m used to having played Kingdom Hearts 1 and 2 before.

I can already tell that this game is going to be more of a chore to grind if I have to find specific cards to unlock doors (a problem I’ve already run into less than an hour into the game). So we’ll see if this is one I finish or if I’m just going to skip to the next game and just try to figure out the storyline through a YouTube video.

Super Mario Bros. 35

Nintendo dropped its latest in the Battle Royale game style that’s been popular lately. Based slightly off of the Tetris 99 concept, Super Mario Bros 35 pits you against 34 other players online, simultaneously running through the original Super Mario Bros levels to become the best of the best.

You run through the levels, grabbing coins and power ups as well as killing enemies as you would normally. The difference in this game is that when you kill an enemy on your screen, you send their “ghost” to an opponent’s screen, trying to keep them from reaching the end goal.

An added bonus of defeating a goomba on your screen is that it adds extra time to your counter, keeping you in the game a little longer as you try to knock out other players. Similarly to the Tetris 99 style, you are given four options for battling your opponents. This allows you to target opponents with specific circumstances such as “most coins, attackers, least time, or even random.

As you collect coins you can spend 20 of them on a roulette question block that will give you one of the following power-ups: 1 mushroom, a fire flower, a star, or a Pow (that will clear every enemy on the screen at once). Grabbing coins as you run becomes useful in the end game as your screen will fill up with enemies and the roulette will become more useful.

As you progress through the game and complete more matches you are given daily tasks to complete that will give you coins to spend outside of the matches. These coins will allow you to buy a power-up that you will receive at the start of the match. Personally I go with the fire flower and try to hold on to it as long as I can.

After playing for about an hour and a half I was able to rack up three wins by utilizing the following strategy: Don’t worry about speed-running through the levels. Take your time and focus more on grabbing powerups such as the mushroom or fire flower and 1-ups. Coins are useful for the roulette but try to hold on to them until you are in the top ten unless you have to spend them to stay alive. Kill as many enemies as you can, and focus on sending them to the person with the least time. Also, try to keep on a loop of familiar levels, so you know exactly where all the power ups are going to be, or you can set up a chain of attacks to kill the most enemies.

There may be a point where the music will speed up, meaning you are probably the person with the least amount of time left on the counter, but try not to focus on that. Rather, keep to the plan of killing enemies to send to your opponents, and spending coins for more power ups as needed.

This is so far my favorite “Battle Royale” style game and that’s not just because I’ve managed to score three wins the first few hours of playing, but because it takes the Mario 1 game everyone knows and adds a new twist by making you compete with 34 other live players.

The game is free to download and play, so long as you have an active Nintendo Online subscription. Though this game is being advertised as a limited time release, I hope that just means it’s free to play until the March 31st deadline.

I also wouldn’t mind it being updated to add additional Mario levels outside of Super Mario Bros (Mario 1). It would be interesting to see the game played out across the rest of the NES Mario catalogue.

News Anchors covering 2020 election projected to say “It’s Too Early To Call” exactly 2,573 times

“We have to cover a lot of dead air in between commercials” said director Charlie Stephens of the coverage of the 2020 election coverage.

“There’s only so many commercials we can run in between updates, and we can only say the same thing so many times before people start changing the channel.” He continues

Americans are glued to their televisions hoping for answers, whether hoping for their side to win, hate watching the updates or simply because they started day drinking early in the day once they got home from the long lines at the polls.

Never has television coverage during an election been more important, and news organizations know this and are taking full advantage, whether they have anything to say or not. But what to do with the extra time?

Guess we’ll go with the old standby “Too Early to Call”

“Duuuuude I love it!” responded first time voter Chad Hunt. “We’ve been partying all day bro! We had corn hole and beers in the afternoon, ballot shooters afterwards and keyword shots lately!”

Again the news coverage said “Too Early To Call” and the entire frat house roared with cheers as shots were sloppily poured for the umpteenth time since coverage started.

If nothing else, this election night will lead to a lot of cases of alcohol poisoning.