Summer time is fun time, so get ready to get loud with four games that are great for large groups of good friends. Play them on the patio after a barbecue, or inside by the AC. With a wide variety of themes and play styles, and three new games (two from 2015, one hot off the press from 2016) as well as an older game that still knows a good time, Board Game Bento’s PARTY! box is a box of fun like never before.
Three Final Fantasy installments were released on the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Final Fantasy was released in Japan in 1987 and in North America in 1990. It introduced many concepts to the console RPG genre, and has since been remade on several platforms. Final Fantasy II, released in 1988 in Japan, has been bundled with Final Fantasy in several re-releases. The last of the NES installments, Final Fantasy III, was released in Japan in 1990; however, it was not released elsewhere until a Nintendo DS remake in 2006.
I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.
The first installment of the series was released in Japan on December 18, 1987. Subsequent games are numbered and given a story unrelated to previous games, so the numbers refer to volumes rather than to sequels. Many Final Fantasy games have been localized for markets in North America, Europe, and Australia on numerous video game consoles, personal computers (PC), and mobile phones. Future installments will appear on seventh and eighth generation consoles. As of November 2016, the series includes the main installments from Final Fantasy to Final Fantasy XV, as well as direct sequels and spin-offs, both released and confirmed as being in development. Most of the older games have been remade or re-released on multiple platforms.
The first five games were directed by Sakaguchi, who also provided the original concepts. He drew inspiration for game elements from anime films by Hayao Miyazaki; series staples like the airships and chocobos are inspired by elements in Castle in the Sky and Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, respectively. Sakaguchi served as a producer for subsequent games until he left Square in 2001. Yoshinori Kitase took over directing the games until Final Fantasy VIII, and has been followed by a new director for each new game. Hiroyuki Ito designed several gameplay systems, including Final Fantasy V's "Job System", Final Fantasy VIII's "Junction System" and the Active Time Battle concept, which was used from Final Fantasy IV until Final Fantasy IX. In designing the Active Time Battle system, Ito drew inspiration from Formula One racing; he thought it would be interesting if character types had different speeds after watching race cars pass each other. Ito also co-directed Final Fantasy VI with Kitase. Kenji Terada was the scenario writer for the first three games; Kitase took over as scenario writer for Final Fantasy V through Final Fantasy VII. Kazushige Nojima became the series' primary scenario writer from Final Fantasy VII until his resignation in October 2003; he has since formed his own company, Stellavista. Nojima partially or completely wrote the stories for Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VIII, Final Fantasy X, and Final Fantasy X-2. He also worked as the scenario writer for the spin-off series, Kingdom Hearts. Daisuke Watanabe co-wrote the scenarios for Final Fantasy X and XII, and was the main writer for the XIII games.
All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.
The series has inspired numerous game developers. Fable creator Peter Molyneux considers Final Fantasy VII to be the RPG that "defined the genre" for him. BioWare founder Greg Zeschuk cited Final Fantasy VII as "the first really emotionally engaging game" he played and said it had "a big impact" on BioWare's work. The Witcher 3 senior environmental artist Jonas Mattsson cited Final Fantasy as "a huge influence" and said it was "the first RPG" he played through. Mass Effect art director Derek Watts cited Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within as a major influence on the visual design and art direction of the series. BioWare senior product manager David Silverman cited Final Fantasy XII's gambit system as an influence on the gameplay of Dragon Age: Origins. Ubisoft Toronto creative director Maxime Beland cited the original Final Fantasy as a major influence on him. Media Molecule's Constantin Jupp credited Final Fantasy VII with getting him into game design. Tim Schafer also cited Final Fantasy VII as one of his favourite games of all time.
My brother-in-law comes here regulary... like every week! And he highly recommends Kappa. He took us here to celebrate my birthday and we had a great Sunday night dinner! We made reservations in advance and the place was packed. I should have done a better job paying attention to what he was ordering, but everything we had was good! We started with some sashimi and nigiri items (including lobster tail and uni), then several rolls. My bro's favorite is the spam and eggs. For our 10-month old baby, we ordered her the avocado tempura and gyoza. She was having a great time enjoying her dishes! We also had creamy mermaid (which is like a crispy egg roll with cream cheese) sake, miso broth and ended with tempura ice cream. It was definitely a great birthday dinner because we tried a little bit of everything! I see why he comes here everytime he's craving sushi!
Overall, the Final Fantasy series has been critically acclaimed and commercially successful, though each installment has seen different levels of success. The series has seen a steady increase in total sales; it sold over 10 million units worldwide by early 1996, 45 million by August 2003, 63 million by December 2005, and 85 million by July 2008. In June 2011, Square Enix announced that the series had sold over 100 million units, and by March 2014, it had sold over 110 million units. Its high sales numbers have ranked it as one of the best-selling video game franchises in the industry; in January 2007, the series was listed as number three, and later in July as number four. As of 2018, the series has sold over 142 million units worldwide.
Although most Final Fantasy installments are independent, many gameplay elements recur throughout the series. Most games contain elements of fantasy and science fiction and feature recycled names often inspired from various cultures' history, languages and mythology, including Asian, European, and Middle-Eastern. Examples include weapon names like Excalibur and Masamune—derived from Arthurian legend and the Japanese swordsmith Masamune respectively—as well as the spell names Holy, Meteor, and Ultima. Beginning with Final Fantasy IV, the main series adopted its current logo style that features the same typeface and an emblem designed by Japanese artist Yoshitaka Amano. The emblem relates to a game's plot and typically portrays a character or object in the story. Subsequent remakes of the first three games have replaced the previous logos with ones similar to the rest of the series.
Kappa Sushi is located in the busy shopping center containing Trader Joe's and Board n Brew. This sushi restaurant is crowded nearly every evening of the week and the seating is extremely limited (about 50 people max). When checking in to the hostess booth, there is no waiting area. So, if there's a wait and it's cold outside, you have to wait in the cold like a hobo. When you actually do get a seat, the dining room is tiny, but very comfortable. The menu is pretty huge with a lot of different items. In particular, their sushi roll selection is AMAZING! The Surf n Turf Roll, containing Kobe beef and lobster is flavorful and cooked to perfection! The Lemon Roll is very tangy throughout the roll, but very good! The BEST Roll is the Sancho Roll! The jumbo shrimp, blue crab, and seared albacore go perfect with the jalapeño ponzu sauce! The Spicy Garlic Edamame was a miss as the sauce tasted very watered down and bland. The prices of the rolls range from $10-$16, so a little on the pricey side... but the fresh delicious ingredients make it worth it. I'd come back just for the Sancho Roll and order 3 of them! They have an awesome happy hour too! 5 stars overall!
I decided not to sub to Bento because of the fact they just blindly send you something. Subscribed to Game Box Monthly instead since Brian actually tries to find something you don't have. I have a prepaid 6 month sub there. My husband also got me AwesomePack for my birthday. After 6 boxes, I'll cancel if they haven't proven to be good fits for us (especially since I got GBM on sale @ 50% discount).
This month’s accessory is great for both game players an collectors: the Might Meeples Justice League Collection Tin. Honestly, I never knew there were custom Meeple until I saw this. The tin features seven Meeple: Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman The Flash, Green Lantern, Aquaman and Martian Manhunter. These can be used in place of Meeple, in place of regular game tokens or even just to display. There are also quite a few more you can find via blind bags, but this is a great start for gamers.
We came in around 9pm on a Saturday night and sat at the sushi bar. The sushi chef's and waiters were friendly. Husband had the calamari, as he is not much of a sushi fan. It was ok...too greasy and was too chewy. Sauce was good though. I had the miso scallop sushi and green mile roll. Both were great and I would get them again. Everything else I saw the chef make looked delicious. A lot of the rolls are tempura shrimp based, while I would have liked to see more of a raw selection.
Zombie Tower 3D is the big game item in this month’s box. The game can be played in two ways; semi-cooperatively or fully cooperatively! This game utilizes a unique 3D board that also acts as a screen, separating you from your teammates. In the game you must battle through hordes of zombies, and save survivors all while trying to stay alive. This game is very reminiscent of classic zombie movies and looks to have a very original style of game play.
The Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) also featured three installments of the main series, all of which have been re-released on several platforms. Final Fantasy IV was released in 1991; in North America, it was released as Final Fantasy II. It introduced the "Active Time Battle" system. Final Fantasy V, released in 1992 in Japan, was the first game in the series to spawn a sequel: a short anime series, Final Fantasy: Legend of the Crystals. Final Fantasy VI was released in Japan in 1994, titled Final Fantasy III in North America.
We played Spyfall in our most recent game night, and you’ll see this week’s Game Night recap as well as a formal review of the game later on Board of Life. Suffice to say that we couldn’t have been more excited to learn this game, which we discovered has a very interesting dual dynamic: if you’re not the spy that round, you have to “find your crew” as fast as possible by tipping them off without tipping off the spy; if you’re the spy, you’re in the dark and must gather your intelligence before the rest of the group realizes who is the odd man (or woman) out.
I originally wasn't going to subscribe for this one as the theme didn't really interest me, but a discount offer, the mention that this box would have over $100 worth of games, and the hint that one of the games was a Spiel des Jahres nominee got me to give in. Based on the month's theme, I thought the SdJ nominee would've been Codenames or less likely, T.I.M.E. Stories. Alas, the "nominee" was Spyfall. Overall, I'm not very excited about this box as I don't play these types of games, though Salem looks interesting.