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This time, I think I'm finally ready to deliver an official unofficial "verdict" on the game, which will be in my next post to break things up a bit. I realize I'm not done yet, & it CAN get better or worse, but I'm over halfway through, & your average gamer can be expected to at least know whether or not they want to keep playing by this point.
Venue: Dining Room
Time: ~11:00 AM-12:20 PM
Cleared Chapter 5
This chapter started with a positively INFURIATING task to gain Firebending. Apparently, I was supposed to unleash the fury by doing a 40-hit combo. By this point, I've MOSTLY adapted to the targeting system, but in this chapter, it REALLY reared its ugly head again. There are a lot of times where you have to fight several different kinds of enemies, but Korra just won't adjust to deal with something coming right at her. Which is a problem in a few areas, mostly when you have to deal 40 hits in quick succession to regain your powers.
I might recommend getting a talisman to help you make more attacks, but I was eventually able to clear the Firebending Challenge without buying anything, which I have to say might be my favorite style yet. It doesn't have the range of water or the power of earth, but it is fast & it is flashy. You get jet propulsion to attack in the air, & you have a certain move that allows you to just hang there & lob fireballs with your feet.
This stage was also primarily a platforming stage, but much better than the previous one, in part because it didn't go 2D. I actually enjoyed this stage for allowing me to leap across the mountain ledges in the southern tundra in a deep blizzard. Talk about immersive.
By this point, I've fought a few mecha tanks, & I was able to take 1 down with the special command for the first time, emulating Korra's feat from the show where she waterbends into the exhaust pipes. I'm not sure if this is JUST waterbending or if you can take down mecha tanks with any style. I'm not even sure what it does, because obviously, you can beat them without it.
Anywho, after one of these, I got treated to a Naga Runner, & just when I thought it was over, I also got a sort of Naga Runner/boss fight hybrid. So I quite enjoyed that.
Then I got to the Spirit Portal & the game decided to let me learn Airbending, which thankfully was the easiest task yet, because I just had to dodge things. Air can really rival fire. Just at level 1, I already have an attack that makes a big whirlwind, & you can use it over & over again for crowd clearing/combos. With Airbending, I've gotten my best combos so far.
It's also this point that I encountered Dark Spirits for the first time, not counting the tutorial. But apparently Korra didn't unlock "Spiritbending" (that's what she actually calls it) when she unlocked Waterbending, so I got knocked through the portal at the end of the stage. Nice Job Fixing It, Villain.
The healing talisman was a GREAT investment, because during all of this, I only had to heal once. I really hope the game keeps up this pace, because we're over halfway through & I still don't know much about the plot. What was really weird was that the Dark Spirits were treated as this big reveal even though we knew not only from the trailers but from the game starting in media res that they would be enemies.
Summary: Got a nice platforming/mountain adventure level, got Firebending, Airbending, AND encountered the Dark Spirits for the first time. There were boss fights, Naga Running, & a boss fight while running with Naga. Hopefully the game will keep up this increased pace, because the story is still virtually nil. It's a really good idea not to neglect the shop, as it will make your life WAY easier down the road.
Next Time: The verdict is in. Who will (probably) like this game, & who (probably) won't?
Miscellaneous: So I'm noticing that the Chi Blockers don't actually block Chi. Again, from a gameplay perspective, I understand why it would be annoying to have your attacks sealed every time you get hit by these guys, who comprise the main enemies of the game, but I really feel like they could have found a middle ground. Also, the AI is really weird, they'll attack me relentlessly until they have me ensnared in a bola, at which point they're suddenly terrified of approaching me while I'm completely helpless.