Posted in Nintendo Switch, Wii U

Thoughts on the Nintendo Switch

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Seeing that I bought a Wii U a little over a year ago, I’ve hardly been giving the Nintendo NX leaks the time of day. I’m not grouchy, but at the same time, I’ve been resistant to thinking that a new system is coming out to replace my Wii U so early on in its life cycle.

Don’t get me wrong, I know all the pitfalls of the Wii U, etc. etc. etc. But I like my only current gen console, and wasn’t too keen on seeing it fade out so early.

That being said, when Nintendo announced the Switch, they got my attention instantly.

Mobile Power

About a year ago, I picked up a new Nvidia Shield K1 as a gaming tablet to replace my aging Nexus 7. I also bought a mini HDMI cable and a controller, which allows me to hook the tablet to my TV and have more or less a portable console system. It works very well, and plays games such as FFIX, FFIV and FF Tactics like a beast.

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In fact, with the setup I own, it does exactly what the Nintendo Switch is setting out to do… except it’s an Android tablet and not a Nintendo console. Now, I should feel a little miffed that the Switch would nudge out both my Wii U and my K1 in that it will overlap in functionality. But I don’t.

In fact, knowing that the Switch is going to be powered by a Nvidia chip honestly encourages me to look at the system on release. Simply because I know how powerful my K1 tablet is… and I expect the chip in the Switch to be much more powerful that even that.

Add to that the vast number of 3rd party developers we’re seeing sign on for the machine. SquareEnix, Telltale, Bethesda… shoot, they may even have Skyrim on release! Things are looking bright, indeed.

The only thing I’m not so sure about are the tiny little Joy Con controllers (when they’re detached from the tablet part). They look really easy to break and lose.

While I had every intention to pick up the new Legend of Zelda for the Wii U (until yesterday), I’m now holding back with consideration of picking up a Switch instead. It will be releasing about the same time that tax returns come back… so….

I still want to learn more before I let myself get hyped for this. But seeing that I’ve not jumped on board the PS4 or XBONE and don’t plan to, chances are high that the Nintendo Switch will be my next console.

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs, Nintendo 3DS, Pokemon, Wii U

June Goals in Review

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Wow, where did this month go? How’d you do on your gaming goals for June?

With the new FFXIV patch, running raids and doing treasure maps, there was a lot of gaming going on. I actually got a lot of gaming time in on Stardew Valley as well. But, with that all said, let’s take a look at what I set out to do and what I actually accomplished!

Earthbound Wii U

  • Play some! ✓

Yep, got this done. I actually got all the way to Saturn Village, which was a good little chunk of gaming.

Pokemon X

  • Earn the next Gym badge ✓

This badge was a slight challenge, but I have a wonky team at the moment. On to the next badge next month!

FFXIV End Game Stuff

  • Complete the second-stage relic for Zuri’s Bard ✓
  • Get Weeping City gear for Zuri✓
  • Get Weeping City gear for Tai ✓

Getting all this stuff done and more. I cleared all of the new end game story for patch 3.3 on both characters. I not only upgraded armor for Tai and Zuri’s main classes, but I significantly upgraded Zuri’s dragoon as well. Annnnd… I finally finished the second stage of Anima on Zuri’s Bard and have slowly been gathering materials for the next stage.

FFXIV Crafting/Gathering

  • Level Alchemist to 60 ✓
  • Gear up Crafters
  • Gear up Gatherers ✓

I’m making tons of progress on finishing up my crafting leveling, all thanks to the new Moogle quests. Not only did I get Alchemist to 60, but the last two classes – Armorer and Blacksmith – are at 56 and rising quickly. I should have all crafting classes maxed out next month.

I didn’t put much time into gearing up my crafters because I’m a little confused on how all that works right now. I’ve been focused more on leveling than gearing up.

I did start gearing my gatherers, however. I earned the Script fishing rod and mining pick, though I’ve yet to work on the botanist tool. But upgrading main hands are nice. Other than that, I’ve mostly been gathering Dragonskin maps.

FFXIV Leveling

  • Unlock Warrior ✓
  • Level Rogue to 25 ✓
  • Level Gladiator to 25
  • Clean up old quests✓

I succeeded in two of my leveling goals including unlocking Warrior on Zuri. Not only did I get Rogue to 25, but I pushed right on to 30, where I unlocked Ninja for Zuri, too. While I didn’t get Gladiator to 25, I did level it to 22, so that I could get the cross class Provoke for my Warrior.

I plan on running some of the Deep Dungeon to hopefully level my tanks a bit as I’m still not keen on running leveling roulette as low level tanks.

I’ve also been holding back on old quest clearing so that I can do that on my Gladiator. But, I did go and clean up a number of job and class quests, so that’s good enough, I suppose!

I can’t see my goals for July being too heavy since I’ve got almost all my crafters leveled, and I’m not overly worried about leveling my +50 jobs at the moment. Depending on how the Deep Dungeon plays depends on how I make level progress next month.

Posted in Gaming, Wii U

E3 Thoughts: Nintendo, Zelda, Ever Oasis

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I’m not a huge follower of E3, simply because I’m not into the console gaming like some folks. The only console I own (if you don’t count the 3DS) is a Wii U, and that’s not even a year old yet. So the major interest I had in E3 was seeing the reveal of the new Legend of Zelda.

Now titled Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, what I have seen of it has not disappointed. When I heard it was to be an “open world” LoZ, this is pretty much what I imagined, just prettier. It was already going to be a must-pre-order for me before this, but now the previews have sealed the deal. I just need to really get around to playing the rest of my LoZ library, as I intended this year!

Speaking of which, Nintendo has a big Nintendo Store sale going on, which I was anticipating. The couple titles I picked up were ironically LoZ – the VC version of Link to the Past and Windwaker HD. I was hoping that we’d see Windwaker HD come as a Nintendo Selects as it did in EU, but the discount set it at $26, and I had some leftover gift card balance from Christmas that covered it, so I picked it up. I also upgraded my copy of Paper Mario from the Wii version to the Wii U VC version for less than $2. Still need to play that.

The new RPG IP that Nintendo showed off is called Ever Oasis. I watched the trailer and I’m not completely sure if I’m sold on this yet. It seems a conglomeration of chibi Secret of Mana with Animal Crossing and possibly Fantasy Life. All these aren’t bad things, and the art seems bright and appealing. I just didn’t feel like anything grabbed me and said “You must play!”

So, I’m wait-and-see on this.

Other good news.

Looks like Stardew Valley is coming to consoles. Yay!

And Pokemon Go is going to be released in July!

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs, Wii U

June Gaming Goals

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Welcome to June! Here’s what I have on my plate for this month. Looking forward to the FFXIV patch 3.3 for one. So, some of these goals are going to be structured loosely until I know more about how the patch is going to shape the content.

I’m also playing quite a bit of Stardew Valley, but I don’t think I’m going to set any goals on that game, because it makes its own. 🙂

Earthbound Wii U

  • Play some! ✓

Pokemon X

  • Earn the next Gym badge ✓

FFXIV End Game Stuff

  • Complete the second-stage relic for Zuri’s Bard ✓
  • Get Weeping City gear for Zuri✓
  • Get Weeping City gear for Tai ✓

FFXIV Crafting/Gathering

  • Level Alchemist to 60 ✓
  • Gear up Crafters
  • Gear up Gatherers ✓

FFXIV Leveling

  • Unlock Warrior ✓
  • Level Rogue to 25 ✓
  • Level Gladiator to 25
  • Clean up old quests✓
Posted in Gaming, Wii U

Earthbound: Tessie, Zombies and UFOs

It’s been a while since I’ve played Earthbound on my Wii U. One of my May goals was to make progress in the game this month, and I did some of that today. Back in December, I got the team out of Twoson by hitching a ride with the Runaway Five.

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Once I got to the city of Threed, however, I found it locked down under a zombie infestation. I kept hearing that there’s a path hidden behind the graveyard, so I did a little snooping and leveling with my team.

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After a creepy run-in with some zombies that stared into my soul rather than eating me, I saw this strange woman walk into the hotel. Following her (which I knew was a bad idea) got me ambushed by a bunch of zombies in a hotel room. We woke up in an underground cell of some sort, unable to get out.

Well, Paula used her whatever-power to send a message to someone we’d never met before. But someone she’d knew could help us. This happened to be a kid named Jeff, who was in a private school in a place named Winters.

Jeff didn’t pause a moment before gathering up stuff and breaking out of the school in response. He befriended a bubble-gum chewing monkey, and the path led him through a wintery forest, down to a pond. The shore was littered with people who were watching for the legendary Tessie – a Loch Ness Monster spin off.

Of course, Tessie is real. Jeff and the monkey catch a ride south.

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Tessie happens to drop Jeff off next to Stonehenge. He then continues south, where he has the privileged of passing through the dungeon created by none other than Brick Road, who wants to become “the first combination of human and dungeon in history.”

Beyond that, Jeff discovers the lab of his father, Dr. Andonuts, who allows him to take the flying Sky Runner… which looks mysteriously a lot like a UFO.

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Jeff hones in on the sound of Paula’s call, which takes him to where the team is locked under the graveyard in Threed.

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Sadly, Jeff does crash-land the Sky Runner, so we’re unable to use it after that point. However, he succeeds in breaking us out of the jail.

So now it’s zombie butt-kicking time (I hope)!

Posted in Gaming, Geek Stuff, Nintendo 3DS, Wii U

New Nintendo Accounts and Preregistration for Miitomo

miitomo

I was never heavily into the whole Club Nintendo when it was around, even though I had a dusty long-forgotten account. Back in June 2015, Club Nintendo shut down, which was before my Wii U purchase and before I became re-invested in Nintendo products again. So the closure didn’t really effect me, though it effected other folks.

The community was told that there would be a new Nintendo Account to take the place of Club Nintendo, and starting today, you can now register for that account. If you have a current Nintendo ID hooked up to any Nintendo system, like I do, you can connect that to the Nintendo Account to register. The process was quick and painless, though I did get an error when I entered my email verification code. It straightened itself out in the end, so no worries.

You can also preregister for Nintendo’s first step into the mobile gaming world, which is Miitomo. It sounds like a Mii social network type thing. While it’s cute, I doubt that I’ll get my friends to try it out, so I’ll probably have limited or little use for it. I still preregistered for it anyhow because, hey, looks like you can get My Nintendo Platinum Points for doing that. Whatever those are! XD

mynintendo

Posted in Gaming, Health & Fitness, Wii U

Wellness: Starting Wii Fit U

wiifituBack when the original Wii Fit was all the rage, it convinced me to purchase the Wii. It was tough to get your hands on one, so I ended up picking one up second hand. It worked just fine, I bought a brand new Wii Fit with the board and everything, and really did enjoy it, despite all of the original game’s quirks. What I loved most was the Yoga poses, and I tried to get about 15 mins of Yoga in as much as I could day to day.

Eventually, my usage dwindled off, of course. And then the Wii Fit Plus came out, fixing a lot of the issues players had with the original game (like no workout routines). It also used the same balance board and imported all my data from the original Wii Fit game, so that made me happy.

Wellness Goals

I will be the first to say that I haven’t been keeping up with my wellness goals as much as I’d like to. I have been doing my best to prevent myself from wandering out to fast food lunches lately, trying to drink more water, and tried to implement a little more greenery in my diet. But I haven’t been active like I should be. Somehow, I’ve still lost two pounds since January. I’ll take it.

The past few weeks, I’ve been dealing with consistent aches and pains through my hips and lower back. Kinda like when you sleep on something the wrong way… except this is all the time. Because I haven’t been super active, I  considered what I could do to increase flexibility and work out the aches and pains in my muscles. Something that was gentle.

Then I thought about the yoga I used to do on the Wii Fit, and decided to check out the newest version of Wii Fit, for the Wii U. I discovered the game still used the original balance board, and mine is in great working order still, so I purchased the game by itself without the board or meter. Right now, though, the cost for Wii Fit U on Amazon is a really good deal considering I payed around $70 – $80 for the original years ago.

Wii Fit U

So my game came in yesterday, and I sat down with it for the first time this morning. I was happy that it still recognized my Wii Fit Plus data, which was moved over from my old Wii when I upgraded to the Wii U. So all my old records, some from over 5 years ago, are still there on the new game. Yay!

I also liked how they implemented the Mii Verse through something called Gyms. You can join a gym (I joined Beginners) and see other people’s Miis and their goals, and give them props for reaching their accomplishments.

The only thing I played with was the routines, where I quickly set myself up a short yoga routine. Everything worked pretty much like I remembered, and it felt pretty good to do some of my old favorite yoga poses. While there was nothing intense about it, for someone like me, holding yoga poses helps to stretch problem areas, work on balance and strengthen endurance in some muscles. I felt a little better afterwards, and will certainly keep trying to work it into my day from here on out.

Sure, it’s not a hardcore workout, but it’s the start of forming a gentle habit that could lead to more rigorous activity in the future. Given the aches I’m  having, I think this is a good, gradual way to work activity into my schedule.

Posted in Gaming, Geek Stuff, Wii U

Disc Drive Space: The Final Frontier

spaceI’ve been obsessed with disc drive space lately, and data drives of all shapes and sizes. It started with the PNY micro SD card that I bought during an Amazon lightning sale in December, which successfully tempted me to purchase my new Shield 1-K tablet. I’m being totally honest – while I had some temptation to pick up a new tablet, it wasn’t until the micro SD went on sale that I took the plunge. Go figure.

And then, Syn gifted me a new SSD drive for my PC, which I haven’t yet installed. But it did get me obsessively cleaning up my hard drive for the move. So I’ve been moving tons of files to my RAWR disc – which is my affectionate name for my external backup hard drive.

Well, the micro SD card I bought for my tablet kept mysteriously coming unseated and totally disappearing. Once it even said it was corrupted and I needed to reformat it. But every time, reseating it fixed the issue.

A bit nervous about this – I heard about the fraud cards passing around Amazon – I did a full out memory test on the SD card using the H2testw program someone on Amazon suggested. It tested fine, so I was curious, and decided to pick up a second, smaller SD card – a SanDisk this time. That way, I can test to see if it’s my tablet randomly unseating the SD card, or if maybe it just didn’t like the brand.

In the meantime, I decided to use the PNY card as a backup to the RAWR disc. So it has become the official Mini RAWR. I also purchased a holder for my SD cards because I’m starting to amass them.

That Wii U

nintendo_wii_u_blackOn the other hand, I realized that even though I have no other large game except Splatoon installed directly on my Wii U drive, that I had less than half the drive of open space. Heck, the Yoshi save file was eating up 3 GB and Mario Kart wasn’t much better at 2 GB. My Wii U drive space was disappearing fast.

I’ve been kicking around the idea of an external hard drive for it for a while. Since still I had gifted cash for the EShop that I wanted to use (still eyeing Minecraft…), I knew I’d need more space if I was going to download more games. But I held off because I was under the impression I needed to get a self-powered USB drive.

After a bit of research, I found that wasn’t true. If you pick up a portable USB drive, you just must use a Y cable and attach the drive to both of the Wii U’s USB slots in order to properly power it. So, I bought a 1TB WD My Passport and the needed Y cable, which both came in yesterday. I hooked them up, transferred a bulk of my data, and it’s working like a charm. Very happy to have 1TB space on my Wii U! 😀

Realization

That’s when I struck me… I have three flip-folders of old CDs and DVDs taking up space on a corner shelf in my bedroom. Many of them are backups from years ago. Some of them are music. Some are anime discs, back before Crunchyroll existed (heh). Why the heck do I have all of these on disc taking up space when I could transfer them over to SD or an external hard drive?

And to go even further than that, I have boxes and boxes of old VHS tapes taking up space in my other closet. So what can I do about that? Chances are, I’m never going to break out my old VCR for anything… can I transfer them to digital and save space? I’ve learned the answer is yes. And it’s not even that difficult or expensive!

Now I just need another WD My Passport to hold the rest of my converted stuff! XD

Posted in Gaming, Geek Stuff, Wii U

2015 Holiday Recap

yoshiwoolyworld

Welcome to my first official non-microblog post on this blog! I know it’s a little late to be looking back on the holidays of 2015, but I was away from blogging for most of that time, so there’s a lot to catch up with!

I spent the holiday out of town alternating between my sister’s house and Syn’s house. All in all, I brought back some pretty awesome loot from both locations in terms of games and geeky things. I didn’t buy much of anything from this year’s Steam Winter Sale, however – just the TyranoBuilder Visual Novel software for upcoming projects.

Aside from that, it’s been a heavily Nintendo holiday (something I wouldn’t have expected only a year ago). I got:

  • Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds 3DS (my sister)
  • Super Mario Bros. 3D World Wii U (Syn)
  • Crypt of the Necrodancer (Al)
  • $40 worth of Wii U eShop currency (Syn)

I’m still up in the air about what I’m going to use that on. I do have an eShop wishlist, but I’m tempted to pick up Minecraft for the Wii U. Yes, I’m one of the few gamers who has never played Minecraft in any form.

I also came away with a lot of great books, music, plushies, joke gifts, toys and fun things. I have to say I was totally spoiled this year.

I was surprised how my Wii U was the star of the show for us – favorites were Mario Kart 8 with my sister and Yoshi’s Wooly World with Syn. It’s been a while since most of us played console games, and now that we’re a bit older, we really can feel the motor-coordination difference. For example, as much as we all wanted to play Smash Bros. Wii U, it was pretty clear to us that without a lot of practice, it wasn’t going to be as easy as we remembered it. In my case, the large Wii U controller was a hindrance. In Syn’s case, her hands just hurt after hammering at the fighting game. Sadly, it didn’t get a lot of play time, and I’m starting to reconsider it’s spot in my library.

Go laugh. Truth is, we’re getting older. So we settled on playing Yoshi on mellow mode, which was quite enjoyable. 😛

Posted in Gaming, Wii U

A Very Wii U Christmas

 

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I know I mentioned that I didn’t think I’d be writing much while on holiday vacation, but I have a little down time tonight, so I decided to post. I just got back from my sister’s house and am currently staying at Syn’s abode, waiting for her to fly in tomorrow so we can start our traditional post-Christmas festivities. We still have presents to exchange and a New Years to see in. Plus, my sister, Syn and I all plan on hitting up the new Star Wars movie sometime next week.

Earlier this year, I picked up a travel bag and a second controller for my still fairly new Wii U all in order to bring it along on this trip. I wasn’t sure how much interest I’d get from my sister. It’s been many, many years since we’ve sat down together in front of a Nintendo console and spent time just plain-out gaming.

We started out messing around in Smash Bros, which was fun. It’s been many years since either of us have picked up a Smash title, so learning the controls and figuring out all of the (sometimes overwhelming) new features and locations was a bit for us to process. I’m sure with practice and time, we’d be just fine. But we only had a few days to mess around with it together.

When we decided to pop in Mario Kart 8, everything changed. I’d dabbled with it a bit when I first got it, having already unlocked a few characters, some tracks, and some kart upgrades. But when we started playing, we were hooked. And, suddenly, we were back playing Nintendo late into the night like we did when we were teens.

I’m not quite as skilled as I used to be, mostly because I’ve gravitated towards playing on the PC for the past 15 years more than consoles. It doesn’t help that the Wii U default controller can be a bear to handle for someone with smaller hands. But we were still able to clear all tracks on 50cc, unlock all the characters, and several kart upgrades.

I think the unlocks were a big thing that kept driving us (see what I did there?) to play, though we were having enough fun even without it. By the end of the first night, my sister wanted to play Link as a racer, so I didn’t even blink an eye to pick up the DLC patch. I’m actually happy with what I got from those packs – the tracks ended up being some of our favorites. Also, having all my favorite versions of Rainbow Road in one game makes me a super happy camper.

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Hoping you’re having a fantastic holiday! I’ll break down some of my gaming gifts in another blog because I did get some very cool stuff! 🙂