Published on March 30th, 2010 | by Greg0
Personal Gaming with XSeed for Your Nintendo DS
Okay, IÊ»m going to admit a dirty little secret here — IÊ»m not a gamer at all. I play Rock Band and thatÊ»s about it. However, I got completely sucked into the joys of a Nintendo DS a couple of years ago on a long flight to Hong Kong. It turns out there are all kinds of fun games that donÊ»t require the same kind of 17-button mashing sequences that are necessary to play (most) console or PC games. There’s a considerable variety of games to choose from, and a few that feel more like iPhone applications than games. Of course the quality can vary wildly, even within a single game company. I tried out a couple of games this time around from X Seed, one new one, and re-visit to a game Truly Obscure tried out last year.
First up is the Korg DS10 Plus, which has a few updates from the original game we tested out. Included in the new version are 12-voice polyphony, 4 tracks for the analog synthesizer simulator, and 2 drum machines. Changes to the original game are song mid-playback editing track and mute feature in song mode. This game got passed around the office a bit; I asked our resident digital music maker try it out, and he enjoyed it. He said it was a lot like the VSTi he has with his Korg Legacy synthesizer. As someone who knows his way around a Korg he had a lot of fun playing with it and said he’d absolutely keep using it.
I’ve got a music background, so a lot of the fundamentals of the program make sense to me, but I fumbled some with the controls. Ultimately I was able to make music with it, but not without a bit of headache. Lastly we gave it to a gamer with little musical experience, and he stood by his original review that it’s a powerful program that is a bit limited by the sounds the DS can make. There is a feature for the DSi that isn’t available for the DS, a function that makes two effects layers available, essentially giving users the functionality of two original KORG DS-10’s.
In an entirely different genre I tried out Ragnarok DS. This game is a scaled-back version of a hack and slash style MMORPG based on a relatively obscure series of manga drawn by Myoujin Lee. Part of why gamers like the original version of this game is that it’s a massively multi-player game, and that part isn’t possible when put to a personal game system like the DS.
Up to three players can play at the same time in several different dungeons, which is better than being on your own entirely, but a lot of the community that gamers appreciate about MMORPGs just isn’t there. Honestly, I was unimpressed. I think there’s probably a good story in there somewhere, but it ended up being a lot of level-grinding, and visiting the same places over and over again. If you’re a big fan of anime style games, and don’t mind the tedious nature of this type of RPG you’ll likely enjoy it just fine.