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Haven Reviews: Pokemon Reborn

Haven Reviews: Pokemon Reborn

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My less than glamorous Pokemon journey started with a blast; Some insane terrorist decided to blow up the train I was riding on. The nerve of some people. The call of adventure lured med into the region of Reborn. Little did I know that this place is a rundown carphole. A depressive and run down place. Where nature has run wild and the once tranquil Azure lake has turned into a toxic mire. There are more Muck in there than Magicarp, which is saying a lot.

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If you are reading this, then you are probably quite familiar with Pokemon already. Never the less here is a rundown.

Reborn is a fangame, which is in no way affiliated with Nintendo. However if this was an official release it would certainly bring the franchise to a new level. Story wise it follows the exact same set up. A trainer starts his journey with one Pokemon, which he use to capture more creatures. Which are used to fight gym leaders and a nefarious gang of thugs with an agenda. However unlike the mainstream games, this one is hardcore. It enforces the rules I seldom had think of and forced me to play outside my normal comfort zone. 16-11.png

The silver lining is that I could pick any starter. Amongst these rules I never payed much attention to, is the level cap on the badges. If I have only kicked the grass of one gym leader, then I can’t get a high level Pokemon to obey me in battle. Normally the camp is quite high, but with twice the number of gym leaders it become very tricky. If I have two badges, the level limit is 35. While Three is 40. This means that I can’t power level my way through them at all. Not only that but the move set and the Pokemons they use, is pulled straight out of competitive it seems. Besides that there is not that many Pokemon to find early on, that is not poison or normal type. Though I did get an appreciation for the toxic spike ability and the ways of using Trubbish in combat. All the special Pokemons are found all over the place, be it an abandoned building, grass or random events. They are all over the place. I feed my team with common candies to decrease their level, in order to have them obey me. A fun challenge but hard.

Though that being said, the most interesting feature is the field effects, which boost certain types. Within a forest, grass type will be strong, until I set the field on fire. This interaction holds true for all the other types as well in Pokemon.

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In most Pokemon games the music is a mixed bag, cant say I really like the music most of them. However the Reborn music is just up my alley, oh so catchy and cool. To me that is. Where the game fails a bit, is the inconsistency of the environment sprites. Some of them does not match the esthetics and are clearly out of place. Though it did not deter me from playing, It is highly recommended for any fan. But be warned the story is much, much more darker and serious. With some people dying amongst other things. Since it is made with RPG Maker, it runs fine on PC and can be found with a quick search.

Njål Sand

Haven Review: Pokemon Gold and Silver

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Greetings trawler and welcome to the magical word of Pokemon, a place of untold mystery filled to the brim with mighty beasts, fluffy critters, a bucket load of weird things and a fair share of Eldrtich abominations wanting to feast on your soul. In this lovely pastel-colored world, children as young as ten are sent out to become a Pokemon trainer; someone who can wield the mighty powers each Pokemon contains. However I have a sneaking suspicion that it’s mostly children who did badly on their aptitude tests that have to travel across the land. This might also explain why fishermen with only “Magicarps” are in the party. In other words, these poor uneducated buggers throw fish at you…weak aquatic creatures that flop around on the ground.

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A move that involves only flopping and Splashing around in front of the opponent. It has no effect. Image found on Google.

As Pokemom participate in vicious fights against other monsters, they will eventually become stronger and “evolve” into a bigger and much more vicious version, though the process should be called a metamorphosis. After all I was taught that evolution was something that happened over a very long time through generations. But I’ll crack that up the likelihood that the local scientist in town could quite possibly be bonkers with no formal education. So I’ll stick to the term “evolution”.

The most common way to proceed through the game is via combat, though some rare exceptions occur. Either through elemental rocks or when night sets, some evolve through trading with other trainers, and a selective few by holding an item while being traded. These also seem to grow strong faster, as well. A new trend that recently occurred a well, is the ability to breed Pokemon by putting two of the same gender at the ever-friendly Caretaker’s place. Eventually they lay an egg that will hatch into baby, and if its nature is right will get a little stronger than the rest, by fighting certain Pokemon. Rumor has it that a Pokemon with different color might just appear…and it’s ultra rare! On my journey I got some new tools, as well. This includes a snazzy phone with a map function, though I’m not sure why these deadbeat trainers I fought on the way want to have my number. It’s not like the eventual rematch will be any less one-sided.

Fact of Pokemon life.
Fact of Pokemon life.

Unless you’ve lived under a rock for several decades or in The Congo, you have probably heard of or seen a Pokemon product. Whether this is a good thing or not is for you to decide. My first encounter was the pesky Trading Card Game (TCG), which almost no one played (yet everyone and their mother had a card or ten). I was clearly a target demographic when Nintendo launched its nefarious plot to make money off funky critters that fought each other in an arena…essentially a combination of cock fighting and match of rock-paper-scissors.

The old and the new version.
The old and the new version.

The first in the series I actually played through was Pokemon Gold, the sequel to Red and Blue, which added more of everything; new monsters, new locations and a lot of post-game content. The formula mostly follows the idea of fighting eight gym leaders, then challenge the elite four and lastly the champion. As part of the post-game content, there were eight more gym leaders to beat and to have a climatic battle against. Red was the champion from the previous game.

Slightly upgraded graphics.
Slightly upgraded graphics.

Eventually Gold and Silver got a remake named Soul Silver and Hearth Gold, which included a lot of the new elements introduced in later games. This includes Pokemon that need a certain level of happiness to evolve. Aside from better graphics and the addition of some mechanics the game includes a pedometer, a device that counts the number of steps the user has taken during a walk. It is also possible to transfer a Pokemon into the device to level it up while walking, and trade a random item with another person who also has such a device.

The main series is formulaic as all hell and is an example of how to make a highly addictive, turn-based role playing game correctly.

Disclaimer:  We received this game for review purposes only. As such, all views in this article are our own. No money has been exchanged for this review.

While you’re at it, check out this Pokemon fancomic.
http://pokeventuras.smackjeeves.com/

Njål H Sand

Haven Review: Tree of Savior

Our world is in peril and the goddesses are missing. But one night I had a dream; a revelation. It told me that it’s my job to cleanse the world of evil and save the holy ones. Now I just have to smash 20160515161236_1several hundred oversized onions to get some experience under my belt!

Tree of Savior is a free to play, Korean online game with a lot of charm, a ton of enemies and many, many classes. Since I’m talking about an online game, grinding and monotonous quests are a dime-a-dozen. As the mystery of the missing goddesses unravels, the story gets much more involved.

At the time of this review there’s a lot of lag, and the usual collection of underpaid workers wants your dollar for in-game items and gear. The NPCs and important people in town have this rather odd brown tint to them, which looks really boring, uninspired and downright creepy.

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Here be a boss, beat it to a pulp with friends!

But make no mistake Tree of Savior is addictive as all hell and the more people in the party, the more experience you gain. The serious amount of awesome bosses and sheer number of daily instances does make it more interesting than most other games in the genre. In many ways the game reminds me of Seiken Densetsu and the other games in the Legend of Mana series.
Since places are quite small and self-contained, there are always people around the various farming spots, hogging the place for themselves. Luckily, this is

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Just like any other market place on or off line.

rectified by switching between channels. Thankfully, the loading time is fast.  Leveling is mostly a speedy affair…mostly. Some levels do have a serious gap in them, which makes little or no sense, as the level cap is quite high. The cash store hardly contains any pay-to-win items, such as extra movement speed and more characters slots. This brings me to one of the biggest problems I have with the game; you only have 4 slots. Pets take one slot, and with all these classes there are at least 12 variations on each archetype.  Tree of Savior encourages team play and being in a party,

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Those red flowers are all enemy mobs, chain them up and grind them down!

since the experience boost is much increased when helping others. This in turn makes grinding a whole lot easier (not that people have caught on to it yet!) The number of high-level characters you’ve got also further increases the passive experience gain. Combat is based around using skills with a set cooldown. While this is run-of-the-mill these days, bosses and such have clearly defined “area of effect” (AoE) attacks that are dodgeable, unless the boss locks up and never stops.

Each class can pick

between male or female. As the class reached a certain level, I got to choose from two paths. Along with the levels I got skill points to increase my skills and stat points

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The Koreans have a thing for gorgeous artwork

. You can put these points anywhere you please, so be sure to have a clear build path in mind. I would not recommend the homepage. It is slow; SLOW, I tell you. The wonderful and charming graphics and the isometric camera makes Tree of Savior a pleasant looking experience. However, the music feels a bit off and odd at places. It’s composed of rave-like songs…not that this is a bad thing…just unusual. Personally I like it, and in the end that’s the important thing. It’s the kind of game I’d be very careful to whom I introduce, due to its addictive nature. There is also a video recording function built into the game, which triggers on hitting F12, the Steam screenshot key.

 

 

20160515164739_1Keep in mind, if you hate hearing people shout about gold for sale, cramped areas with people waiting for the farm to respawn, random kill steals, a lot of lag or suffer from MMO withdrawal, stay the hell away. There is one thing every online game succeeds at, and that is capturing the spirit of a middle-eastern bazaar, where everyone is peddling wares and screaming loudly at each other.

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Disclaimer:  We received this game for review purposes only. As such, all views in this article are our own. No money has been exchanged for this review.

Steam store page :
http://store.steampowered.com/app/372000/
H
ome page:
https://treeofsavior.com/

Njål H Sand