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[This is the first half of the Union cross reviews (I am calling this unchained because it was once called unchained). This will display each perspective in a way. This review focuses more on gameplay and some story with my character. The other being mostly story in general in the perspective of some characters. Luckily, there isn't many heavy spoilers. ] - - - - - - - - - - - - In the same universe, we shift to another form of perspective. We follow the player (AKA You and me, the audience). We travel to different worlds to gather lux and uncover some truths of our role and the choice we make that effects our lives forever. That's as far as I could go to avoid spoilers -- We focus on gameplay for this review. This is probably the least favorite game in terms of gameplay. This is a personification of repetitive for many who are salty about this title. Like how I feel about the DS titles, I understand why people didn't want to play the game. However, the major draw was the events that occurred in this title (aka story). That will be explained in the next review. You play as....however you want to look at it: yourself or your OC [ROFL] They are simply called "the player". You may call it your OC or yourself, but it is it's own person. I think it would've been cool if they let player have their choices. But I understand why they went to where they did because there is a a major event that was important lore of the series. The only choice you decide that slightly effects the story is your choice in joining one of the five unions: Vulpes, Leopardus, Ursus, Unicornis, and Anguis. Continuing on gameplay, it is a gacha game. In other words, in details as such: you pay to win. People complain about the repetitive gameplay, but the fact you pay to win is the final straw for many. In combat, it is turned based in support of medals inserted in slots for your keyblades. You get creative with certain medals with abilities and attacks and placement with magic, speed, and/or power that align with light and darkness (upright and reverse). Making your medals stronger in the process the only way for you to progress missions and leveling up your character. So whenever they introduce a new medal, you either have to raise some jewels in game for awhile and/or pay for the amount of jewels you want. So, the biggest issue this game suffers in terms of keeping people in is the gamble of getting the medals they advertise (that itself explains what I mean by pay to win). Then there is the story updates. This was a struggle simply because not only do we have to wait monthly, but we are behind from Japan If you do not want to play the game itself and waiting for the updates, I highly recommend you seek out the updates on Japan's version. The community does a really good job keeping an eye out for updates from Japan's updates (translations and all). The fact they have it way ahead of us is a reasonable reason to not play the game. However, I enjoy waking up every morning to grab me some daily login jewels and do my daily missions. I feel like it will be sad to see it gone when the time comes for it's end, whenever that may be. I joined this game because I enjoy seeing myself being part of the lore (the self insert excuse, I know, go ahead and cringe LOL). I've been with it since the it's release in the U.S., about 2-3 years. Thsee myself progress since the beginning is almost wild. I even chose my Union from, dare I say, what my heart told me...seriously no joke. I am not someone who is not number one in the ranks. But I enjoy some missions and the story updates. In case you ask, I am in the Union Vulpes. I am proud to be in this Union for as long as I have. I look forward to where this leads. [ARTIST NOTE] So, yes, this is yours truly. I was gonna make the outfit somewhat similar to the universe....but I change outfits once in awhile so I do not have a full on particular outfit that works for me solely in the game. If they have an outfit similar to this, then this is as close as I'll get. LOL I actually almost considered doing two for the default designs of the player character. However, I felt that would be more work. So I just added myself...at least for this project. If I had a chance to sells books of my project, then doing the default designs sounded reasonable to do LOL As you know, this is an exact background as my previous piece. However, in terms of the contrast, you can definitely notice that this is more saturated than the last one which I made it more soft and foggy. I simply made it like because they both have different contracts and whole shabang. Of course, since I am in this timeline, I added Chirithy and the Starlight Keyblade. Not much else to say honestly I also wasn't originally going to add this to the collection. But if I made my own book of titles in the Kingdom Hearts series, I might as well lay my own bit to it. That and the player character happens to somewhat have SOME importance. You can check the other posters hrough this link in my deviantART: https://www.deviantart.com/mns-prime-21/gallery/67100545/Kingdom-Hearts-III-Countdown
I don't post on forums much, so I'll admit I'm not quite experienced with this kind of thing. However! I wanted to try and shed some light on recent updates to Kingdom Hearts Union χ in terms of how a game developer thinks. I do this because I've heard many complaints about the game (a good chunk of which are entirely justified) and I wanted to try and point out how the developers are trying to make things function. Easier Attainability of Jewels: One of the earliest complaints I'd heard about the game was that in the Japanese version it was easier to earn jewels. For definition's sake (and for those who don't play the game), jewels are a freemium currency in that they provide a means for players to spend money on their otherwise free-to-play game. The in-game functionality of jewels is primarily to obtain attacks, but they can also be used to revive you in a pinch or fill up your Special Attack Gauge. In a recent update, daily login bonuses were increased from awarding 50-50-100-100-200 jewels to 100-100-200-200-300 (from 500 to 900 every five days) and quests that provide up to 300 jewels per day were added. This increase was an attempt to provide one of two things. First was to provide a catch-up mechanic for players who are new to the game or haven't played in a while. No one likes feeling left behind for extended periods of time, and people usually enjoy getting stronger very quickly. The second thing was to make sure players were more motivated to spend their jewels on things. If something is rare, people are less inclined to spend it. The dev team doesn't want people sitting on large stashes of jewels, since that means people aren't being encouraged to spend them. If jewels are more plentiful, people are more willing to spend. From a more pessimistic view, the more players get used to spending money, the more likely they'll want to purchase more. From an optimistic view, more jewels means more ability to purchase strong medals when they come out, but I'll get into that in a sec. The Shop's [EX] Banners (+ Premium Avatar Boards): In a good economy, people regularly spend money. KH Uχ has a fake economy where money can spontaneously erupt, but it's still ideal for these half-existent video game economies to have players who spend. Initially, shop incentives were fairly slim, getting a medal guaranteed within 10 pulls and they would have no special attack slots filled out (henceforth "pips"). Over the time this game has existed, the developers have lowered the number of pulls required or given other incentives like having pips filled out or decreasing the cost with every pull. You could always obtain those super-awesome medals in other pulls, but in most cases the deal that promotes it is the best way to obtain them. With the recent jewel supplement updates, the shop has emphasized the phenomenon of [EX] medals, which are only obtainable through a deal that promotes them. This may seem like a step backwards, though in actuality it isn't. Part of the problem with the setup of this game is that it always feels like it wants you to buy everything as soon as it comes available. In the friend medal list, the game will happily show you that Illust. Kairi [EX] medal that's got three abilities and a Special Attack Multiplier of 200%, making many players feel like "gee, I sure wish I could have afforded that medal, thanks for rubbing that in my face." The important thing to consider is that you don't have to buy anything. The store page is the equivalent of the front of a brick-and-mortar store, only instead of being able to walk past it without a second glance it takes up your whole attention. The developers give you multiple chances to obtain otherwise unique things, often in cases like the premium avatar boards providing them at a discount the second time 'round. The [EX] deals are to give more incentive to buy from a promotional deal instead of using something like the daily deal (which provides 3 any-rarity medals at 50% discount). The important thing to keep in mind is to not feel pressured into trying to obtain a specific medal if you don't feel you can afford it. I know it hurts if you're a completionist and you want at least one of everything, but it's important to be patient. Sure, you just spend all your jewels on that Illust. Kairi [EX] and now they've got that awesome-looking Dual Wield Roxas [EX] in the store, but you don't have to buy it now. When the promotional deal ends in a few days, that Roxas medal will be inaccessible. But Roxas won't go away forever. He'll come back……… ¬_¬ Anyway, at a glance, it does look like the developers just want the player's money. In part, they do. The video game industry is actually quite cutthroat, particularly in the case AAA developers. Some companies (who shall not be named) will literally reduce or cut pay of their artists / programmers if the game they worked on doesn't score more than 80 on Metacritic. Mobile games are considered successful if they have a high download count and make a lot of money, and the most consistent way to do that is to be free to play to provide the download count with freemium currency to provide the income. Of all the games I've seen with a freemium system, KH Uχ has one of the least in-your-face approaches and gives a relatively large number of opportunities for players to earn jewels outside of paying money. In theory, console video games are supposed to cost [a dollar] for every hour the player spends enjoying the game (plus or minus, depending on how open-ended the game is). While free-to-play games such as this one often work on a different metric, the primary part of the game costs players literally nothing. It's important to keep in mind that game developers are human beings. They have a job, they're trying to do their job so they can afford food, and they don't always have control over all the decisions made. All they can do is try to fulfill the requirements put to them while also making a fun game at the same time. KH Uχ's dev team is actually remarkably on top of fixing bugs and even does a lot of back-end fixes to make the game easier on the devices themselves.