Aug 242010
The curious case of Kainé

The strength of Nier is the friendship between its decidedly odd cast of characters. The western release features a burly and frankly ugly man, a rare choice of protagonist for a JRPG. His principal companion is a pompous talking book that grants him magic powers. Also magical is their young comrade Emil, the sunniest character in the game and the one most constantly dumped on by its world. Then there is the possessed warrior Kainé, whose picture I have tucked beneath the fold because her appearance is arguably NSFW. That design is one of my main reservations about the game. [Read more…]

New game minus

 Critique, Role Playing Games  Comments Off on New game minus
Aug 222010

I recently wrapped up my time (for now) with Nier, a game I hadn’t been planning to play. On the strength of Trent Fingland’s extremely positive review, I decided to give it a spin, and now it has a place on my Game of the Year shortlist with BioShock 2, Red Dead Redemption, and Trauma Team. As Trent pointed out in his review, Nier doesn’t really do anything new. Instead it picks and chooses from existing influences ranging from text adventures to twin-stick shooters. One strength of the game is that each of these play motifs surfaces at just the [Read more…]