What Video Game Did I Play Yesterday?
Kandagawa Jet Girls (PS4)
December 3rd, 2022
Today isn't as bad as the last couple days have been. I've already been out and run some errands this morning, and since I don't have work to worry about today, I'm a little less tense.
Last night, I decided to get back on track to finish Kandagawa Jet Girls, clearing the peppy American dorks' story and moving on to the shrine maiden team's story mode, which actually offers somewhat of a challenge! The AI doesn't seem to be any better, though. Their jet ski just has miserable garbage acceleration states, leading me to think the challenge might fade as I can install better parts on their vehicle. I'm in this game to clear it, though, so I'll take points of interest where I can find them.
I also went back to Disaster Report 4: Summer Memories and, after starting over to make a very small change to my player character, wandered around for about an hour. So far, this is a very interesting mix of laid back exploring and sound design that evokes the idea that every building around you is damaged to the point that it will creak into submission. I'm enjoying it so far and interested to see where it goes next.
November 25th, 2022
Yesterday was a really nice holiday, eating, watching movies, and doing crafts with family. When I got home, I did some basic "around the apartment" stuff and, in part because of a headache that's still hanging on today, did my five races in Kandagawa Jet Girls and went to bed. It was a good day.
November 24th, 2022
Happy Thanksgiving, or a very nice day that is not Thanksgiving, depending on your location as you read this! I'm posting this morning as I slow cook some mashed potatoes and prepare to make some green bean casserole.
I was pretty peppy last night, and stayed up late playing games in order to hit a button on my slow cooker at the proper time. Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards was definitely the more interesting of the games I played. I went through 5 levels and a boss, not in that particular order, and even though I do, as I've previously mentioned, think that the setpiece bits in the boss levels make them drag a bit, it's such a nice, charming, and well made game! It is pretty easy going, but it makes me happy to play, and that's worthwhile. I think I'm probably pretty close to the end by now, so I'll probably clear it within my next few play sessions.
Less excitingly, I was also able to press on pretty well in Kandagawa Jet Girls. I finished the main rival team's story, which was fine, and moved on to the cheerfully deranged, Japan-obsessed foreigner jet ski girls. They are a delight, even if the races are not increasing in variety or difficulty. I cleared five story races last night, though, and if I can keep up that pace through the four-day weekend, I ought to at least get within range of this game's finish line. I'm pretty sure I'm officially over halfway through at the moment.
November 23rd, 2022
Today, I'm posting before work, with an unsolvable problem ahead I am very much expected to solve, at risk of penalty, eating away at my brain. I spent a lot of last night trying to puzzle out what the problem might be and how I might be able to approach it, but kept coming up short. Oh, well. No work tomorrow, so even if I do fail, I don't have to listen to any of the angry voicemails I get about the issue for four days.
After I gave up trying to figure things out off the clock last night, I played a few races in Kandagawa Jet Girls. I thought I was over halfway through the game, since I'm in the fourth of what looks like seven sets of team stories. When I unlocked a couple more teams last night, though, I saw that there's an eight story at the bottom of the list, previously hidden from me. The team behind this game had a lot of confidence to provide so many story races with so few tracks and such little handling difference between the jet skis. I'm determined, though- I will clear all of the stories eventually.
November 22nd, 2022
I'm so sleepy today, but have already been up and at 'em for a while to get gas and put air back in my tires before the weekly office day. I slept ok last night, though, so I don't know what the deal is.
Anyway, last night, I wanted to clear a quick game so I could justify an extremely discounted game purchase, so I went through my itch.io bundles and downloaded Serre, a very cute and brief visual novel about a girl who cares for a greenhouse and a fluffy invading alien. It was really short, and I didn't get the feeling my dialogue choices mattered that much when they popped up, but it was pleasant, like reading a warm and fuzzy one-shot manga. I thought the art was really cute, too, with everything looking bright, round, and cartoony. It was a short gaming session very nicely spent.
If you're interested in playing Serre, too, you can download it here!
Finishing Serre cleared another game goal for me, but I went a little off the rails during this goal, snapping up cheap copies of Sonic Riders and Cooking Mama: Cookstar while I was out shopping. Because of that, I set my next goal at five games to clear before my next purchase, to make up slightly for my extra shopping here. More than likely, I'll end up scumming this with some short games again, but I'm okay with that. Before starting this blog, I wasn't really finishing games at all, normal or short. Playing short ones doesn't derail my more normal-length gaming progress, and it lets me play a nifty variety of games I already have on hand, thanks to arcade compilations and itch.io bundles. I'm excited to see what this next set of games brings!
Somewhat less excitingly, I also went through a few more races in Kandagawa Jet Girls last night. The rival team's story isn't as bad as I thought it would be, but I'm not super interested in it, either. I customized their jet ski to look a bit more like a lightcycle from Tron, though, and I am pretty satisfied with that.
November 20th, 2022
I'm posting after doing a Sunday morning grocery run today, having gone with Aldi over Target this week. I almost have everything I need for Thanksgiving cooking, but Aldi didn't have any gravy! I'll stop by a more normal grocery store early in the week to get that figured out.
Wild Arms ended up being the main thing I played yesterday, with my going in and clearing the next dungeon while I had a pot of soup going. The boss took forever to fight, but was weirdly not difficult at all despite that, so it felt a little tedious. Getting through that and the post-dungeon story stuff felt like a good chunk of gameplay, though.
Later in the night, I cleared the character story I was working on in Kandagawa Jet Girls. Just like with the first team, it took until the final race of the story to hit an interesting track with some mildly challenging elements, which I then absolutely destroyed without really knowing what was going on. From here, I have to go back up and do the main rival team's story, which is fine. Having cleared five races last night makes clearing all of the team stories here feel less daunting than it did at one race a night.
I did the daily challenge in Pokken Tournament DX, too. I don't think I'd ever really used Gardevoir when I was playing this before, but they were a decent character.
With that, my whole Sunday lays ahead. I have a dream that my nose will stop running (not likely) and another dream that I'll be able to eat some fast food (very likely!). I hope you guys all have decent days, too.
November 19th, 2022
Yesterday did end up being decent, and despite some busy parts, both optional and compulsory, I got to play many games and do many crafts. As a prize to myself for not screaming in despair at work, I went to my neighborhood's used game store, too, and picked up a cheap copy of Sonic Riders, which I'm hoping will be either fun, strange, or aggressively misguided. Getting one of the three feels like a safe bet.
My set up yesterday was to play games between rounds of crafts, and Pokken Tournament DX was the only one I didn't end up playing way longer than I'd intended. I did the daily challenge and won, getting some skill points to toss to my Pokemon so that when I actually do sit down and play seriously, I'll hopefully be a bit overpowered.
I then played a few races in Kandagawa Jet Girls, clearing the idol team's story and going back to the gyaru team. I'd kind of like to clear their story this weekend, which is a very "doable goals are nice to have" sitation.
My last game of the night was Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Mega Mix, which I played both casually and much longer than I'd planned. I didn't mess with the dress up parts of the game or buying any new outfits at all, but got into an "I love this song, I can't bear to shut my Switch off before playing it!" loop that kept me amused for a pleasant amount of time. I'm happy that this is in my game rotation.
November 17th, 2022
Last night, I had a late call again, so I have no pep approaching today. My phone times have been so heavy the last two days that my throat is just burning today, and I'm falling behind on the desk side of my work thanks to it. The combo of desk work and call center work always feels like a no win situation.
My mood was pretty low last night, so I just played another race in Kandagawa Jet Girls before bed. The races in this game are all so similar that it's getting a little boring to play it too long at a time. To just take five minutes and relax, though, it's still fine.
November 6th, 2022
I've already been to Target today, and it was a very intense experience. I am kind of zonked out from last night's time change, it was super crowded, and I had a very clear grocery list to follow. I forgot one thing, and had to go across the street to Natural Grocers to get tofu, as Target was out. Everything is set for a cooking day, though, which should help make next week better.
In regards to games, I played Wild Arms for a couple of hours last night, and it was pretty enjoyable. Playing it on a mini console means I don't have an instruction book on hand, which made some of the (very basic) puzzles harder to solve than they needed to be, just by merit of my not being sure how to switch characters on the fly. I got it figured out, though, and made it through Rudy's intro dungeon and the first dungeon where all three of your characters have met up. My early confusion gave me a nice level boost, too, since the encounter rate is decently high in this game, which is never a bad place to be at the start of an RPG.
I did my daily check in on Kandagawa Jet Girls, too, and got involved in it enough to clear all three missions on the race I was doing. I got mildly hung up on a "don't hit the wall" mission, which it took me a few tries and was satisfying to clear. I didn't get into it enough to do more than one race, though.
November 5th, 2022
Work yesterday was wild in a bad way, so I was glad to have games set up and good to go after my brain got fried like a piece of chicken.
I did a quick check-in with Kandagawa Jet Girls, knocking out another race and adjusting some of the jet skis. I'm sure playing this one race at a time is exactly how the game creators intended it to be enjoyed, stretched out over a period of weeks with nothing more than incremental story progression each day.
I also got back to Wild Arms, and played through the treasure hunter, Jack's intro dungeon. I didn't go much further than that because I don't know to what extent I can trust the save points in this game yet, and I'm definitely apprehensive about using the Playstation Classic's save states. I'll figure out the rhythm of that soon enough, though. It looks like there's a character switching mechanic that'll play a decent role in the game, and since characters can be switched out at save points, it makes me wonder if they might be slightly more generous here than in other PS1 RPGs.
November 3rd, 2022
I was having some weird feelings about what to play last night that I don't think entirely make sense. I've been itching to play an old school, pixel art-y JRPG, and got right up to the edge of playing one last night, but have this bad thought in my head that I have somehow not "earned" the right to do so. I don't know what requirements I could meet where I would feel okay turning one on and settling in for some turn based battles, but I will keep chugging along until that just goes away.
In things I actually did turn on and play last night, I did a few races in Kandagawa Jet Girls. I cleared the main girls' storyline and, in their last race, came across a track that actually had some interesting design elements that brought player choice and challenge into the mix. I still came in first by 40 seconds, yes, but it was something! Now to get through the storylines of the other teams, which, at my current pace, should take a few weeks.
November 2nd, 2022
Today is going to be fairly difficult at work, I think, so I am posting somewhat nervously today.
My games last night were pretty par for the course stuff. I did my daily check in with Kandagawa Jet Girls, doing a race and some mild trophy scumming. The treadmill minigame is infuriating, since I'm bad at fast-pressing the same button over and over, so now that I have my B in it, I hope to never deal with it again.
With my Genesis Mini 2, I decided to try Silpheed, which seemed cool. The prerendered backgrounds certainly gave it an interesting look, and from what I played, the difficulty seemed fair. Between this and Sewer Shark yesterday, though, I got a slight feeling that everyone looked at the Sega CD tech and decided that the best way to use it would be making games where people are constantly yelling. That's not really a drawback, it's kind of funny, but it was a strange commonality between the two games.
Before bed, I also did 20 or so puzzles in Codebreaker Puzzle 1000! ENG & JAN to try and relax. It's still boring, which is maybe its finest defining feature.
November 1st, 2022
November starts today, and I'm hoping it'll be better than October was, at least on my end! I cleared six games in October, which isn't bad, but Persona 3: Dancing in Moonlight is the only one that wasn't a one or two session game. That's okay, though! I am curious to see how I'll do this month.
I got my Sega Genesis Mini 2 set up and going last night, and decided to try some games I'd been curious about over ones I thought would be good. I turned on Sewer Shark because I think some old FMV games can be funny and was not really disappointed. The video is compressed into a pixel-y mess that makes it hard to tell what you're looking at, and everyone kept screaming at me. I had to google how to actually steer my vehicle, but that may have just been because I wasn't paying too much attention to the game. I didn't get far last night, but I'll very likely play this again.
I also tried Virtua Racing, which was a lot more fun. I wasn't very good at it, but got marginally better with every try. The super bright, primary colors and chunky polygons were really charming, though! Driving past the blocky cows and the cute ferris wheel made me really happy. The little music cues that played whenever I passed a checkpoint were nice, too.
I also checked in on Kandagawa Jet Girls, playing one race and getting another SSS rank despite the fact that I slammed into a wall and came to a dead stop during it. After that, I scummed the mini games to buy some machine parts.
October 31th, 2022
Happy Halloween, everyone!
I got into crafting mode yesterday, so my game time was pretty minimal. I played two more levels in Sonic the Hedgehog, which sounds like less than it is because Labryinth Zone Act 3 was a screaming hellscape that caused me naught but suffering. The next level I played was cool, though. Star Light Zone has nice music.
I played a couple more races in Kandagawa Jet Girls, too, getting my first SSS rank victory and spending piles of time on character customization. It was enjoyable.
I got my Genesis Mini 2 delivered as I was typing this, so tommorrow's post will probably have at least something about that. For now, though, I'm off before my lunch break comes to its sad end!
October 30th, 2022
I've gotten this site set up and good to go for November this morning, which is only a couple days away now! I don't feel like October went fast at all, though. I felt so crummy through most of it that, instead of having a "wow, time flies!" feeling as I set up my November links, I felt more like "gah, thank god this is almost over." Not every month is good, though, so that is okay.
Yesterday, I wanted to play something older, but a little more in depth than the arcade games I've been playing lately, and am also excited that my Genesis Mini 2's arrival is imminent. Because of that, I started save state scumming my way through the first Sonic the Hedgehog. I'd never made it past Marble Zone before, on account of my truly hating Marble Zone, but I got to Labyrinth Zone Act 3 last night. I was swearing at my TV like wild, as it's a very infuriating game, but it was fun, too! I don't know if I'll clear it today, but I'll at least go for a couple more levels.
I also did a couple more races in Kandagawa Jet Girls, getting started with the idol jet ski girls' story path. It was way too easy, though. I don't mind games not being challenging, in general, but in one of the races I played, I smacked into a wall, accidentally turned around backwards, forgot how to reverse, and still came in 25 seconds ahead of the AI in second place. It was a little surprising. I don't know if the game doesn't expect me to know that I ought to be installing upgrades on the side characters' jet skis or something, but it felt weird to breeze through races so easily half asleep at 1am. It seemed very strange.
October 29th, 2022
Last night, I continued getting my money's worth out of my copy of SNK 40th Anniversary Collection for Switch, going in and finishing the NES version of Guerrilla War. I was way closer to the end than I thought I'd be when I picked it back up, so I buzzed through a couple more levels and the credits rolled. I don't know if this is a common feeling or not, but it's so strange to me in these old SNK games that the bosses feel easier than taking ou the piles of one-hit-and-they're-out enemies in the standard levels.
In the cartridge's museum mode, however, it did say that the infinite continues were a part of the original game and not just a feature added to the collection, to basically make the home version a practice mode for the arcade game. It's not an awful idea, considering it, and I felt powerful clearing an NES run and gun, easy mode enabled or not.
Plus, clearing the console version of Guerrilla War banks me another game purchase, to be made at a later date. I'll probably go back and try the arcade version soon, too, before I tackle the Ikari Warriors trilogy.
With Guerrilla War cleared, I went back to Kandagawa Jet Girls for a little bit and, finally, unlocked some story modes for other characters. I have nothing against the main girls in this game, but I do, sadly, think that literally everyone else in it is more interesting, so I'm happy to have the chatty cutscenes officially become more unhinged. It's exactly what I needed to stay interested in this game.
October 28th, 2022
I'm feeling somewhat better, but extremely sleepy, so I still don't have so much to post about. I got all the jack-o-lantern decor Pikmin in Pikmin Bloom, though, scoring my last one walking around my apartment last night! I'd thought that, since I'm not feeling well, this event would end up being a bust for me. It's somewhat satisfying to have gotten all of the special Pikmin in spite of that.
I also played another story chapter in Kandagawa Jet Girls, redoing the race a couple times to get all three missions cleared. As bad as I am at racing games, "Finish the race without hitting the wall" was a merciful task in that the game didn't care if I came in 6th out of 6th to clear that one. The difficulty level still feels super easy-going, but from the story mode menu, I think that's just because I'm not very far into things yet.
October 26th, 2022
Yesterday morning, I ended up going home from work early and took the rest of the day off from there, after walking from the parking garages to the office picked my coughing back up again. It sucked.
Somewhat because of that, I didn't really end up doing any sizable amount of missions in Kandagawa Jet Girls- I did two chapters of story mode, replayed the races to get three stars on each of them, and went to bed. Hopefully, I'll be peppier tonight!
While I took my breathing medicine, I had the SNK 40th Anniversary Collection back out and was playing the NES version of Guerrilla War, a Cuban revolution themed arcade run-and-gun that I hadn't played before, but was feeling loopy enough to tackle yesterday. It felt really strange to have the infinite, no-progress lost continues in an NES game, especially since the pacing is deliberate and doable enough that I'm not sure it's totally necessary. Since I've never played this before, I'm not sure if it's a quality of life feature for the modern collection or just how the game is. I felt like I could figure things out and make progress, though, which is a good feeling for me to get in an 8-bit action game. I didn't quite clear this last night, but'll probably go in and finish today.
October 25th, 2022
I'm doing a quick post before an office day today, which, since I am still coughing a lot, I am very apprehensive about. Hopefully I can stay pretty clear of people and keep my mask on, though, so it should be ok. I like my coworkers, and I don't want to take them out, too.
I played more of Kandagawa Jet Girls last night, and even though it's not a great jet-ski racer, it still has sunny skies and super bright blues that make me happy, so I had a nice time. I was only on story mission two and totally bombed out, thinking I was awful at the game, but as soon as I went and upgraded my girls' machine, I came in first with zero effort. It seems like that could be a balancing issue, but oh, well. I'd kind of like to play longer tonight, if I'm awake enough, so I'll see how playing a few missions straight feels in terms of difficulty progression then.
October 24th, 2022
Saturday's time with Time Soldiers put a dent in my desire to tackle another old arcade game, so I was mildly more modern yesterday. I played around with Vib-Ribbon for a while, which I hadn't put on for a really long time. My medicine is still making it tough to sit still, so I had been trying to think about what album I owned would be hardest to play, since it lets you swap the default music with your own CDs. I came to the conclusion that No. 1 in Heaven by Sparks had the most promising combination of punishingly high BPM and 5+ minute gauntlets to clear, and am not sure I was so far off the mark. I tried, I swore a lot, and though I certainly did not come close to clearing the album, it was fun.
I also picked a PS4 game I'd let sit for a while back up before bed, Kandagawa Jet Girls. I got it a couple years ago and played it once, but the cops came to my apartment and accused me of having a physical altercation visible from the street while I was playing. I was alone in my apartment, playing video games and running my fruit dehydrator in my pajamas, so the cops looked, decided they were wrong, and left, but it was still a really unpleasant experience. That's not the fault of Kandagawa Jet Girls, but I hadn't really played it since.
Last night, though, I did a free race to remember the controls, played a few of the minigames, and feel sufficiently back on top of things. It's not nearly as good as a Wave Race game, but I knew that would be the case picking it up. For a fluffy time killer, it'll do for a while.
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