What I'm Playing - No. 69
Welcome back to another weekly wrap-up of the games I’ve been playing over the past week!
Fair warning: minor spoilers for Trails of Cold Steel II act 1 and act 2 are included! Nothing major, but if you don’t want general plot/situation changes spoiled for you from those acts, you should skip that section.
Click a title to skip to that section. Games contained within this post:
Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Switch)
After planting many more flowers on the island, I finally completed the K.K. Slider concert objectives by getting a 3 star island rating. Like in previous games, K.K.’s concerts are the credits for the game, and this makes me really nostalgic as I honestly never saw this in New Leaf. Anyway, from this point on K.K. will show up every Saturday night for a chill concert.
This means I finally unlocked the Island Designer app, and can make pathways now! I’m still working on laying paths down across the town. Not exactly sure where I want my streets to run yet. I also redeemed Nook Miles to add the ability to create and remove cliffs and water on the island, but haven’t decided how I’m going to use those terraforming powers yet either.
Also, there was a patch this week that added Leif and Redd into the game. With Redd now available, artwork is back, and after I got a piece of surprisingly genuine artwork from Redd and showed it to Blathers, the museum will be expanding to include an art exhibit soon!
Lastly, my shop has now expanded! It’s still called Nook’s Cranny for now…maybe forever. I’m still hoping it expands again later and turns into Nook n’ Go, but maybe that wouldn’t fit into the cozy island life aesthetic.
The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II (PC)
I made a lot of progress in Cold Steel II this week, completing Act 1 and probably about half of Act 2!
The journey has taken my party to various cities and dungeons as a civil war rages on the continent. I have been trying to complete most of the optional quests I come across, but even with this I know there’s stuff I’m missing. You get a grade at the end of each chapter based on how many quests and optional objectives you completed, and so far the best grade I’ve gotten is A rank, but I know that S rank is possible! I’m not bent out of shape or anything, I’m happy with the A ranks, it’s just interesting how much optional content is present in each chapter.
It wouldn’t be a JRPG without mini-games, right? I’m far enough now that I’ve unlocked the snowboarding mini-game, and it’s pretty fun! You steer your snowboard around to collect flags and jump and move to avoid obstacles while zooming downhill. New snowboarding courses seem to be added after about every main story chapter, and I’ve enjoyed it enough that I keep coming back to check for more because I want to complete them all!
A huge development occurs at the beginning of Act 2: you get an airship! For the first time in my time with Cold Steel, I have access to a world map and can freely travel around! First off, I’m finding I have a much better understanding of the geography now. I don’t think there was a world map you could freely view in the first game, and you definitely couldn’t control where you went freely. Not that the game or its predecessor weren’t enjoyable before getting the airship, but having the freedom to choose where to go in a non-linear order feels great. There is still some linearity to the gameplay structure, as it still follows the same formula as the first game. Between main story missions, you’ll have a few quests to pursue, some required and some optional, and can tackle them in any order. However, having the airship means that these quests are spread out across several areas instead of all taking place in the same region, and this provides nice variety in my opinion.
There have been some really cool moments in the main story, but I don’t want to spoil those for anyone playing the game! I feel like I’ve spoiled enough already revealing the airship. Anyway, here’s to another week of solid JRPG goodness with Trails of Cold Steel II!