I really going to miss the DJMAX series and partial rant of today’s music games

February 25, 2015

You know lately I wanted to come say this despite being old news but DJMAX is basically dead and it went out with a whimper not a bang. Alot of of people that worked on the series like PlanetBoom, Electronic Boutique and Kimys has left and created Nurijoy which made a new music game called “Beatcraft Cyclon”.

This is due to Pentavision merging with NeoWiz and not really doing anything to meaningful with Pentavision and DJMAX. The last DJMAX game relased is DJMAX Technika Q a iOS/Android game based on DJMAX Technika with a free to play system (Requires Kakao in South Korea, pnet account for international release). I would’ve almost play this game alot but there were several put offs like being online only which sucks since 3G is not cheap in my country of Canada and the fact that the game is basically going to be unplayable if Neowiz shuts down the servers. There were very few new songs in Technika Q due to people like Croove, Cuve and Forte Escape moving on other companies. Forte Escape was reported to be very mad at Pentavision for not supporting his DJMAX Trilogy project well as there were going to be bunch of things like song expansion that never really happened (There were updates with songs from the Metro project but that’s not exactly the same thing as FE would’ve wanted). Items like noteskins being limited uses and limited fever did not help what so ever. This has prevented me from actually supporting the game and buying song packs like I did for DJMAX Ray.

I was a very big supporter of DJMAX releases in North America as I brought DJMAX Fever, DJMAX Portable 3 (which I found disappointing¬† for things like mediocre songlist and grinding), DJMAX Technika Tune, brought song packs for DJMAX Ray, and played DJMAX Technika 2/3 in the arcades. Now Neowiz just given up on DJMAX Ray, with no signs of the remaining members the development team which is called “PLANET TEAM” except maybe XeoN. Neowiz didn’t even attempt to get other music artists like kinato, memme or Warak to create more songs (At least Andamiro got a bunch of new people to work on Pump It Up PRIME). The last new song is Paul Bazooka’s “Deborah” which was an song that could’ve been okay except for that last part when there’s some lousy complextro sounds near at the end of the song that I didn’t like (Is Paul Bazooka really only doing Complextro nowadays?).

I first experienced DJMAX with Portable 1 with had great music but was lacking in features and had notecharts not suited for the PSP (Notecharts got better on Portable 2) and now DJMAX finished off with a disappointing mobile that was quickly forgotten about. It has been a depressing time to be a music game fan since BEMANI games are mostly arcade only except for Reflec Beat and jubeat which are on iOS as well (and chances of seeing anything other than DDR Extreme in Canada is not common and I probably have to go Japan or something to play them), DJMAX is gone, O2Jam is still alive (but O2Jam is a game I only play to record new songs since it is online only which sucks especially when servers go down/overloaded), Groove Coaster is not getting enough songs for its home version (and there’s no easy password reset option), Pump It Up is arcade only nowadays meaning chances to play any Pump It Up is hard for my area (except for Pump It Up Pro at Playdium and Fiesta 2 at Dave and Buster’s in Buffalo, NY) and most of the music games I either don’t care like Just Dance and Guitar Hero, or dead, or I’ve forgot to mention. At least there’s still Cytus which is not too bad but some of the recent songs I didn’t like too much because there are mostly leaning Brostep/Dubstep and Electro House (there’s only few Electro House songs that I like/tolerate), Musync which needs to have more songs but at least is still being developed (like creating PS4/iOS versions), CROSSxBEATS would have been decent (but it is a free to play game with a energy system and terrible unlocking system), Tone Sphere (has a mostly uninteresting/boring songlist), there’s Taiko no Tatsujin (Japan only, new game on system with region lock like 3DS and needs some knowledge of Japanese to even choose a song but is one of the few music games still with home versions still being released) and there’s Dynamix which is decent but I’m waiting for that iOS version since it runs like crap on my Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 tablet if effects are on. It seems music games nowadays are arcade or mobile only which I found semi-disappointing. Oh well, I guess I’ll have to focus on other games for now.

In regards to F2P games…

February 25, 2015

(Original post from Miiverse but revised a little bit)

Okay, after looking at some of the posts around the web about Pokemon Shuffle, it makes me sad that some people are defending microtransaction heavy F2P games, one of the worst aspects of modern gaming.¬† Yeah sure it’s “free” and you can play games like that without paying but I played games like this before, and let me tell you, they make it less easy to progress without paying as levels goes on.

Eventually, the player has to feel like paying for a bunch of fake currency just to beat that one level or to unlock something or quit. Some of the free to play games have a energy system make you wait and prevent you from playing further unless you pay money to refill this so-called “energy”.¬† I’ve seen the same sort of thing at the slots as well, as some slots may emphasizes some sort of “overdrive” icons or jackpot on the reels just to say to the players “Hey you can win big, so why don’t you put in another dollar?” I really hope that Pokemon Shuffle is just a one off thing, and that people don’t pay much for this. If this becomes successful, then I fear Nintendo might incorporate more microtransactions in future games even though most people play handhelds/consoles like 3DS to get away from the trend of F2P games on mobile.

Some people has been saying that microtransion heavy F2P to play games are like the arcade games but I don’t believe it is a valid comparison as you can play as much as want per credit as want provided you have the skills but these F2P dictate how much fun you can have with the game without paying. I get it that some people say that they have resistance and have patience so they the urge to pay will not happen but I believe there are people that impatient that they are willing spend anything for fake currency, even $100 just so they can longer. These big spenders are also known as “whales” and while they make a smaller percentage than people spend a little, they contributes most profit wise.

I am also concerned children with F2P games especially with something like Pokemon Shuffle since they could spend their credit card money, and some may not know the difference between real and fake currency. They could overspend too much and rack up thousands of dollars because they might not know better. I am not opposed to all free to play games but only when they are done right like with Steel Diver Sub Wars where there are an option to pay for a full version and some extra DLC that are optional though. I forgot to mention that something like jukebeat or DJMAX Ray is a better example of F2P since at least you buy song packs for a cost and can play them for unlimited times after that.

In conclusion, I find that free to play games can be done right if games have an unlock full version for a fee or if the microtransations are not that necessary to play through the game but not if they use a so-called energy system that makes you wait unless you pony up cash.