Is…is that a new Street Fighter EX game?

So it looks like we’ll soon be welcoming to the fighting game ranks a new Street Fighter EX game.

…get hype?

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That’s exactly what I stammered upon seeing this the other day:

It HAS to be, right? Those characters, that music…ahhh…the memories.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to blather on about my history with Street Fighter or the middling relationship I have with Street Fighter EX 3 (the only SF EX game I’ve played), mainly because I’ve been there, done that. (Though, I will shamelessly plug our YouTube channel where you can check out the one Street Fighter EX 3 video that I made before our PS2 died.)

But there are a couple interesting things about this right and ready teaser, which was just shown at EVO 2017. The first is that the “Street Fighter” name is nowhere to be found. And neither is Capcom — the original Street Fighter EX series was collaboration between Capcom and Arika, a company that was formed in the 1990s by former Capcom…

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77 Hours Later, and Mass Effect: Andromeda is in the Bag

ICYMI, I barreled through Mass Effect: Andromeda all the way to the very end. And by “barreled through,” I mean that if I had had two actual free week to complete the game, then maybe my description would be more accurate. Still, me getting through a single game in less than three months is nothing short of a miracle, so my words stand. To see those words, which involve lots of spoiler-free thoughts on the game itself, just click below to see them on Virtual Bastion.

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Actually, 77 and one-half to be precise, but who’s counting? Me, that’s who, because I really can’t believe that I spent anywhere near that time in the world of Mass Effect: Andromeda. But there it is, and now it’s time to talk about it. Where to even begin?! There’s so much to unpack here, but I’m going to keep things streamlined and spoiler-free (but no less opinionated) by exploring the game through five topics: story, missions, characters, gameplay, and graphics. I’m also going to aim to keep the previous Mass Effect games out of the picture. As bound in that universe as Mass Effect: Andromeda is, it’s a different animal from the original trilogy.

TL;DRMass Effect: Andromeda is a solid and enjoyable game with its own set of issues and quirks, none of which significantly detract from the overall experience.

Now, if you want to read, continue at…

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Initial Impressions of Mass Effect: Andromeda

ICYMI: I’m playing Mass Effect: Andromeda! Had a bit of a rough start, but I think we’re all good now. Click on to read my first impressions of the game as posted to United We Game.

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Despite having a wholly exhausting Tuesday (the 21st – release day), I was determined to enjoy all that Mass Effect:Andromeda could offer that evening. The game downloaded in just a couple hours (score one for the new PC!).  After all my nighttime chores, I settled in, only to be met by…uh…sputtering? Well, not immediate sputtering. The game loaded up fine, and I created a new female Ryder. After that is when the sputtering started. The initial opening scenes cut in and out like a buffering video. It happened intermittently every handful of seconds or so, but then things smoothed out after the title card appeared. Once the story began, it looked like I was good to go. No sputtering, no “buffering.”

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Okay Mass Effect: Andromeda, You Got Me

It was only a mere 18 days ago that I decided to give in to Mass Effect: Andromeda. For whatever it was worth, I was on the fence about it for awhile, being excited, then not excited, then totally meh, and then excited enough to place my pre-order. The “me” of years past probably wouldn’t have been so flip-floppy about it, but what can I say? It just took a little more convincing this time around. What drove me into the positive about Andromeda? In large part, it was thanks to new gameplay videos and news stories like the one I riffed off in this United We Game post.

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Image (©Bioware) by Flickr user inforumatik (CC)Image (©Bioware) by Flickr user inforumatik (CC)

Regular readers might have caught a post I wrote a c ouple months ago in which I was a little down on Mass Effect: Andromeda. Unfortunately, I was harboring some bad thoughts about what Andromeda was purported to be back in early December, and that something was, as I perceived it, a mere shade of what I had hoped from a new Mass Effect adventure.

Well, here we are now, just twenty days away from Andromeda’s release, and…yep, I have to admit that I’ve changed my tune. I am now, fully and without exception, all aboard the Andromeda train. Woo woo!

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Thoughts on Mass Effect: Andromeda as an Open World Game

Since first publishing this post on Mass Effect: Andromeda over on United We Game, there hasn’t been much in the way of new news about it. Could it be that Bioware is waiting until E3 next month to offer up some more reveals? Guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Till then, here are my own scintillating (haha) thoughts on what could be and shouldn’t be in the new Mass Effect adventure.

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Image by Flickr user Beautiful Games (CC)Image by Flickr user Beautiful Games (CC)

It’s recently come to light that Mass Effect: Andromeda might be an open world game, one with a “seamless, open world galaxy,” as the headlines state. Seeing has how I’m currently knee-deep in the vivacious world of the original Mass Effect trilogy (on ME2 now, and loving it more than before), I couldn’t help but wonder what the games would have been like if they had been open world games, a la GTA IV and V instead of the mission-based games that they are.  Does the gaming landscape need an open world Mass Effect game? Would it be good for the series? Are we talking, like, No Man’s Sky meets Dragon Age: Inquisition or something else? And what would that mean for players? Would it have to be connected to the Internet to play? How…?  Why…?

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Will the New Final Fantasy VII Lure Me Back into the Final Fantasy Universe?

With all the news of the FFXV demo recently dominating my social media feed (haven’t played it myself…yet), I nearly forgot that a FFVII remake is totally still in the works! Final Fantasy and I have grown apart considerably since I completed FFIII and FFIV a number of years back. Despite the fact that I really enjoy the games — FFVII is a favorite — a divide remains. In this post I wrote several months ago for United We Game, I explored the idea that maybe, just maybe, the FFVII remake would somehow lure me back into the world of chocobos and moogles.

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Image by Flickr user GogDog (CC)Image by Flickr user GogDog (CC)

When the Final Fantasy VII remake was officially announced at this past weekend’s PlayStation Experience 2015 conference, I watched in awe and confusion. The gameplay video that was shown was exciting and unexpected. It looked like FFVII, but it also really didn’t. In fact, if it hadn’t been for Cloud’s spiky blond hair and familiar Buster Sword, I probably would have thought it was an entirely new game. But it wasn’t. It was Final Fantasy VII for a whole new generation. And it was Final Fantasy VII for a previous generation to experience anew.

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Just when I thought it might be time to turn in the Wii U…

I can’t say that I’ve done my best to formulate a decent relationship with my Wii U. In fact, It’s likely become the most ignored console in my history of ignoring consoles. But I’m hoping to change that. Though I’ve not followed through on my desire to get Super Mario Maker, there’s still time this year to see things through with other great titles. I recently hashed out these and more Wii U thoughts over on United We Game.

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Image by Flickr user wiiu-spiele.com (CC)Image by Flickr user wiiu-spiele.com (CC)

My relationship with the Wii U has been complicated from the start. When it was first announced, I was confused. When it was first released, I was curious. When its commercials saturated my vision, I was frustrated. When its games trickled out, I was bored, except when it came to Super Mario 3D World, and then I was happy. When I finally got one, I was overjoyed. When I realized it had been sitting on the shelf unused for months, I was upset. And as I am a realist, in the recent past I seriously considered that my days with the Wii U were over.

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