Reason Over Feeling

The soul is where it loves,

embodying itself to a thing.

Pounce and prance.

Only fools give their

hearts away, and

yet it is so natural.

Maria, “you slay men for sport”

with your charm.

What emotions decide is temporary; rational choices generally please forever.

P.S

A poem inspired from my reading of Erasmus’ The Wooer and the Maiden. What a delightful and an entertaining read.

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Rambling about Snowstorm, FFVIII and Boys

09feb2019

Ryo Hazuki from Shenmue inspired me to be less of a hermit, so I decided that I will go out more often. I was planning to visit the theater this week until we got hit by a snowstorm which pretty much affected a lot of businesses. We don’t normally get snowstorm like this.  It may seem like an inconvenience, but I sort of enjoy the silence that the storm brings.  This is a reminder that nature rules over mankind. It’s very humbling. I like to think that nature is giving us humans a break from working and not take things for granted (e.g., shelter, food, warmth etc). Thank you Mother Nature.

Because of snowstorm, I stayed inside playing Final Fantasy VIII. So far, I enjoy the game.  My favorite character so far is Laguna. He looks like Rinoa, just a male version.  He’s funny and silly. I rather play as him than Squall, the brooding, silent protagonist.

 

Laguana

 

I am going to confess one thing about Squall:  He looks like a guy I went to school with in middle school.  That’s why I couldn’t bring myself to the play game for a long time because I disliked the guy.  He was so cocky and mean.  I remember I got the guy suspended unintentionally after my teacher learned that I started skipping class to avoid him. Anyway, that was long time ago. Memories of middle school fade away like ancient history. I’m over it. That’s why I can play the game now.

Upon zooming in on Squall’s face, he looks like Gackt. I don’t know if that is a good thing or not. He looks so mean. Then again, I am still in the very beginning of the game. So I don’t know much about Squall yet.

FINAL FANTASY VIII 11_23_2018 8_41_59 PM

Enough of boy talk. I don’t really mind the length of some games because I don’t play for scores, speedrun, or leaderboard. I play for quality.  I think of video game like smart phones. It’s convenient because it has music, story, game–all in one package. And I like simplicity. So my prefer choice of entertainment will always be in the form of video game.

P.S

Normally, I like winter, but this year, I am anticipating for spring because I want to see blue sky.  I want to go to a park and just lie down underneath a tree. It’s kind of strange of me to say.

Rambling about Beating Shenmue II

I didn’t know where to put the poster that came with the game, so I put it on my fridge. Not so bad, I think.  Every time I eat, I will look at the poster and smile. Yes, I finally beat the game.

Shenmue 1 and 2 poster.jpg

I see why fans went crazy when the news of Shenmue III became a reality through the help of Kickstarter funds.  Great game design tactics would make consumers hungry for more. Well, that’s just me personally. I am hungry for more. The ending is similar to D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die in the sense that a third installment is expected to be followed. We finally met the mysterious girl, but the story is not done. It was an enjoyable cinematic game. The game is beautifully presented and the art direction is top-notch. Now, I really want to travel. In the summer, I want to grow plants, flowers and herbs. This game made me want to do all these things. Just go play the game and you will know why.

It is so interesting to learn while playing this game that Ryo Hazuki’s impulsive quick to act tendency is incorporated in the gameplay.  Shenmue II is heavily based on quick time events. It required some memorization because the quick time sequence flashes quickly as multiple buttons are expected to be pressed. I failed several times but learned quickly.

The highlight of the game for me is not meeting the beautiful mysterious girl, it was the adventure and the people I met along the way, in particular, Ren. There were a few funny cutscenes that made me laugh hard and they were all charming.

Now I wait for Shenmue III, but in the meantime, I am trying to figure out what other games to play. I think I dropped Dark Souls for this game in the summer. Wow, it has been that long? My 30 dollars gift card was sure worth it.  Oh yes, I have Silver Case and Final Fantasy VIII to play. I will try Silver Case and see if I enjoy it, if it doesn’t grab my attention, I just won’t bother completing a game thoroughly. I realized if a game doesn’t captivate me instantly then it is not worth playing.  You either fall in love with a game or you don’t. I guess that’s how you know if you found your soulmate.

Enigma

enigma

If humans are exact–

inputting ideas as clear it can be,

then there’s no mystery to be deciphered.

Addiction, typing.

I want to know more. What do you really mean?

If only I were a machine, life would be simpler,

don’t you think?

Speak what you mean,

So I can make us happy.

Shenmue II: Earn Money to Access Fighting Arena

Work is already a mundane task in real life. What makes it an exception in game? Well, it is a necessity. For this post, I share a tip, which may help those who are curious about making money in this game because you are going to need it if you want to proceed in the game. There’s no way getting around it.

I arrived in Kowloon with HK $2. I felt broke and a little nervous (I am so insecure about being homeless in this game!)  I haven’t really tried selling collector items with the pawn shops.  There are a lot of pawn shops that buy items for different price. That requires some research. I sort of brush that off for now.  All I have done so far is part-time job and gambling. I learned that gambling might be the quickest way to earn money.

Shenmue II_20190113170018

I thought having to come up with $500 was brutal in order to meet Ren. Well, it seems that I need a total of $3,500.   There are three strong fighters I have to beat in the fighting arena. They all boast they’ve never been defeated. I confess, I wasn’t too thrilled when I heard about it. Partly because I don’t want to farm for money.  It will require some patience on my part to earn money and practice my moves and luckily this is just a game because I think I will literally pass out from overworking.

Shenmue II_20190114183954

Unlike in real life, when you gamble, there is a huge risk that you would lose money, and of course high chance you gain ton of money (no wonder people get an adrenaline rush from winning) in a short amount of time.  In this game, SAVE DATA is your best friend! Every time I won a bet (I max out my bet which is $100), I saved my file. I kept doing this until I earned $1,000. No sweat. I don’t care what the NPC says about me for quitting every time I lose. I don’t quit because I lack courage: I just like to play it smart. There is a difference.

If I were to rate the fighters from weakest to strongest, I would say Rod is the easiest, which is explains why it cost $500 to access the arena. Then comes Greg, which cost $1,000. Lastly, the most brutal is Chunyan. It cost $2,000 to enter the arena.  She throws people off the cliff when they lose. What a witch *shivers*.

Because I am clueless and all over the place, I fought Greg first, which is a good thing because once I defeated him, I doubled the money I bet. So, I had enough to face Chunyan.

For your amusement, I will include the video clips of the fights here starting from weakest to strongest. Let me just warn you though, I think I am clumsy fighter.

  1. Rod

2) Greg

3) Chunyan

One thing I think the developers did a good job with the game is its lenience towards the player (assuming a child is playing). Whenever I fail a tournament, it allows me to retry without penalizing me. It gives the player power. Just pay attention to Ryo’s expression in the video clips above. Sometimes he serious. Sometimes he smiles. Sometimes he is stern. Sometimes he is forgiving. Sometimes he is cocky. He is just like a real human being except that he is destined to win. Well, isn’t that the whole point of video game in the first place?  I appreciate the humanness of this game.

Well that’s it for now. I used to think that I have out grown out of video games that’s why I feel like it’s a chore to beat games these days, but Shenmue series reminded me that it’s not the case. Unlike most modern games, I have not anticipated when the game will be over and conclude whether the game is good or not because I am enjoying every moment of it. I never have felt that I have wasted my life when I play a good game. I really wish the general mass have more respect for the medium.

P.S

A fellow co-worker bought a book called Ready Player One for me to read, assuming I am a gaming addict. Wow! I didn’t know video game was written all over my face! Well, I guess it’s not so bad. It gives me something to do during break.  I might do book reviews in the near future because reading is also my favorite pastime.

 

Shenmue II: My Part Time Gambling Job & My New Companion

I didn’t mind going to work in Shenmue II’s world because work was actually really entertaining (gambling, arm wrestling, lifting up crates, and fighting.)   I had to come up with HK $500 in order to proceed in the game. The best part, the NPCs complimented me on my skills. Hey, I can always take the compliment for my gambling skills even though in real life I hate it with a passion. I know it’s pathetic of me to confess, this game allows me to walk in a guy’s shoes. I am feeling so macho lately.   The game developer sure knows how to make those little small achievements feel rewarding.  When Ryo beat his opponent, he smiles. When he smiles, I smile too.

Shenmue II_20181226213515

My adventure continues onto Kowloon after I was able to chase after Ren. Yep, I had to pay him $500! The section of the game is fun–as I enjoy pressing buttons quickly. But there are more to come, and it gets more intense further into the game.  And still, I have yet to meet the mysterious girl from the cover! In time, we shall meet, hehe.

I am stuck trying to make some money (gambling) so I can participate in fighting tournament. This is the part where I seriously need to learn my moves instead of just spamming buttons.  For each fight, I have to bet money to participate!  I need a lot of preparation and practice.

So far I love the flow of the game. Normally, I would try to bypass gambling in games, but everything in this game seems to have a purpose. It’s really impressive. I even want to plan a vacation to China one day! Maybe I should seriously consider getting a boyfriend, so he can escort me like a princess. Hehe I am just kidding! I will invite anyone wants to go on a trip with me. That would be fun. The more the merrier!

Now I wait for the weekend to come, so I can continue on my adventure. Until next time, take care.