Things are more than
chaotic for me right now. I'm back from vacation, but with enough
problems in my life to make me feel like I need to be back on
Anyway, I skipped all
Rock Band songs this week. I'm interested in a couple, but my money
and time needed to go elsewhere. Like with The Beatles and with the
final chapter of Final Fantasy IV: The After Years.
Speaking of which, when
I get time I'll post some thoughts. For now, however, I will say the
final chapter starts pretty awesome with a feel of the second world
of FF6. It's dark, gloomy, and heads in a whole new direction. The
only problem, so far, is that you can't change you party despite
having a few useful characters in your airship (like you ninja squad
from Edge's chapter) and only four in your traveling party.
Well, there's one more
problem. You can collect Small Tails for a reward as the first part
of the chapter is underway. However, I may be screwed out of this
one time reward that you cannot go back for after you reach a
certain point in the plot. Why? Well, you need seven or fourteen
small tails for one of two possible rewards. Well, after grabbing
about 12, I checked my inventory and it said I had four!? Then I
grabbed about five more and it finally said I had five!? I hope the
trade-in of small tails still works for me since I have obtained
more than my inventory says. If not, then I miss out on one hell of
an awesome ability/item...all due to one strange bug. I guess time
will tell, since I haven't met the person who trades you for these
small tails yet to see if my game is screwed or not.
Yesterday ended up
working out to be a good day. I didn't have time for The After
Years, but I still had some good things come my way.
First off, I
played all of The Beatles: Rock Band. That includes the one DLC song
(All You Need Is Love) that's out right now. I played most of the
game solo, but my friend Bastich joined me for the last few venues
on the mic. I didn't try anything beyond expert guitar, but I can
say that the game is not exactly for challenge elitists on guitar.
Maybe the vocals and drums get tricky, but the strings all seem to
be rather simple compared to Rock Band. That's not a problem,
however, if you're like me and like to have fun rather than trying
to look like an elitist douche when you brag about your leader board
The game is pretty
quick. I mean it's 45 (plus one DLC) songs that average around three
to four minutes each. An endless setlist of Beatles would not
exactly be some amazing challenge. There's even an achievement for
beating the game, from start to finish, in less than 24 hours. This
shouldn't be a problem for a lot of gamers since it can all be
finished in about two to three hours.
However, while I
enjoy the game, there are some issues. The first is that it looks a
bit different from RB. That's not bad in itself, and you do get used
to it with time, but it seems the note charts are shorter (less time
to see upcoming notes). Also, the vibrant colors are a bit hard to
get used to. Still, these issues are minor and will remedy
themselves with some playing time.
Another problem is
the credits. Holy shit...the credits don't end. They go on for about
15 to 20 minutes, with everyone ever remotely related to the product
being mentioned at least once. Major League Baseball gets thanked
twice, if that's a good indication. Also, you cannot skip the
credits (but you can pause). They are long enough that my wireless
360 controller did go to sleep half way through. Yes, only half way
through did the controller time out. Plus, you may need to go
through the credits to get the encore song (The End), and I didn't
want to risk it by resetting.
Also, the game
lacks any modes beyond story and quick play. There are challenges,
but they are only the complete set for a given chapter in the story
without breaks between songs. I would have loved something else,
maybe to incorporate DLC into the game better. DLC, so far, is only
found in quick play.
Also, if you got
the free DLC code from Gamestop for a pre-order, I think it's pretty
much bullshit. You can enter your code now, but many songs (all but
one) that will be DLC are not out until next month, or later...and
the list of the ten songs you can pick from are limited (including
Her Majesty...a whopping 25 second song). Plus, if you get three
songs from an album for free, and then buy the rest, it looks like
you may pay almost the same amount that you'd pay for the entire
album after the album discount. Then again, this is a Gamestop
problem and not a The Beatles issue.
Anyway, I have to
wrap things up since it's a busy night for me. Last night, Velveta
scored two VIP passes to End Fest tonight. While I could do without
Blink 182 (maybe if I was about ten years younger...or if they
didn't record anything beyond Enema of the State) and Taking Back
Sunday, it will be cool to see Weezer with some backstage passes and
free food included in the deal.
Last night I got to see
Weezer. This takes another band off my list of "need to see at least
once" bands. That was the good news. Well, that, and the fact that
Weezer put on one hell of a good show. Between playing a good dose
of old favorites (mostly from the blue album) and some of their
other songs, there was fun. Add in a partial cover of War Pigs and a
full cover of Should I Stay Or Should I Go? from The Clash to end
the show and you have a strong performance.
The bad part of
this concert, however, was pretty big. For one, I've never gone to
the White Water Amphitheater before, and I'm not sure if I ever want
to again. It's a venue a lot like Woodstock or, more local for
myself, The Gorge. Which is to say there is one road into the show.
It's a long road that goes down to a single lane in each direction
for a fair amount of the time. This is leading out of a normal area
of high traffic at rush hour each work day. So, when I say it too
almost two and a half hours to get to our seats after leaving home,
and we only traveled about 14 miles, it says something is just plain
bad on this location. We were hoping to get to the concert early
enough to take advantage of our back stage passes...which didn't
happen since VIP stuff (included in our VIP passes) was stopped as
soon as the last band before Weezer left the stage. We got to the
show just as Weezer was getting on stage...which ruined the plan for
free food, free backstage access, and some other fun.
Basically, in the
end, Weezer was the opening act (or the main opening act) for Blink
182, so their set was also a short one (55 minutes). So, after two
and a half hours of traffic hell, I saw one quick set and then ran
like a mad man to avoid the traffic that would get out after Blink
ended. Well, I also ran for the hills once Weezer was done since I
figure I don't need anymore of the modern imitation Blink (since the
band turned into a bad imitation of the modern emo bands before
their break-up five years ago).
Speaking of music,
Rock Band 2 DLC next week is looking pretty interesting. It's
another big mix of styles with a few from Anvil, a couple from
Dinosaur Jr., a couple from The Guess Who (which should be awesome
for my tastes), and two from Tenacious D (at long last they get DLC).
I'm probably going
light on DLC for a while since I'm hitting some financial road
blocks with some car and puppy maintenance needed in the next couple
of week. However, The D is a definite must have (even if Rock Your
Socks is probably going to be hard as hell on guitar).
Also, on a final
music related subject, I'll just say this;
Anyway, my weekend
is looking like a mix of chores and trying to make some headway on
The after Years. I've played the final chapter once since it came
out, and I definitely have some catching up to do.
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