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in the grip

I went to Best Buy to get two things: a 512MB SD card for my new camera, and a USB 2.0 reader for said card. I came out of Best Buy with two things: a (sucky) reader for the SD card I refused to buy, and Jade Empire. I was thinking about pre-ordering this game, but I procrastinated too long. Turns out, no big deal. It wasn’t even hard to find the “limited edition” of the game at BB. I’m only about 4 hours into it so far, but it is looking great. It bears the most resemblence to BioWare’s previous Xbox RPG: Knights of the Old Republic, but only in UI and basic game form. This game looks better, in general, and the combat is totally different (and harder, since it sort of requires, you know, skill.) Actually, the combat sort of reminds me of Battle Arena Toshinden – I think it is because of the way you can roll left or right while fighting.

Update: …and done. After about 30 hours (more probably) of playing Jade Empire, I completed the game. While the game could have been longer, it didn’t really need it. The writing was excellent, it was far more stable than KOTOR 2 (which wasn’t done by BioWare, actually), and it had a pretty good combat system. In short, it is an excellent game. Other things that I liked about Jade Empire:

Things I didn’t like as much:

That being said, like KOTOR, this game has a both a “light side” and “dark side” way through the game (in Jade Empire, these are called “open palm” and “closed fist”, but they are very very similar to the KOTOR alignments), so there is a reason to replay. Hmm, I guess I need to start playing it again…

Written on Apr 15, 2005.

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