Showing posts from April, 2012

Dead Space

On the Ishimura everyone can hear you scream

Players: 1
Systems: Xbox 360, PS3, PC
Genre: Survival Horrow, Third Person Action/Adventure
Release Date: October 14, 2008
Rated M for: Blood and Gore Intense Violence Strong Language

Survival horror is not a very widely explored genre.  The main forerunners, in my mind Resident Evil and Silent Hill, have lately taking a switch to more action adventure.  Dead Space, an original franchise created by EA, can be considered action adventure, but at it's core it's a prime example of why survival horror became such a phenomena.

Dead Space takes place hundreds of years in the future, at a time where the human race is facing such an extreme shortage of materials they have made planet crackers, such as the USG Ishimura.  As the Ishimura's communications are knocked out a small team is sent out to do repairs and find out what caused the blackout.  Isaac Clarke, an engineer, is sent out to investigate.  As the game's introduction starts we se…

GoldenEye 007: Reloaded

Created by: Activision, Eurocom Genre: First-Person Shooter  Release: November 1, 2011 ESRB Rating: T (Teen) My Score: 8.5 out of 10
So tell me again James, how long did it take you to make 00?

A classic makes a comeback, graphics and game play brought up to date as well as the newer Daniel Craig version of James Bond.   The movie GoldenEye was released in 1995 and the original Nintendo64 game debuted in 1997.  Bond 007 and Trevelyan 006 are on a mission in Russia infiltrating a chemical weapons facility suspect to the the source for terrorist attacks on British embassies around the world.  Trevelyan is apparently caught and executed by a Russian General when the mission goes awry while Bond manages to escape and detonate bombs he had placed throughout the facility.  Trevelyan was not executed and becomes your enemy, once you discover his betrayal.  There have been a few revisions to the story from the original movie and game.  I'm not going to give away the story, get a hold of the DV…

Tales of the Abyss Review

Created by: Namco Bandai Games Genre: Role-Playing Release: Feb 14, 2012 ESRB Rating: T (Teen) My Score: 7 out of 10
Tales of the Abyss takes the best gameplay, and mixes it with the most obnoxious characters the series has ever seen, along with the most unimpressive storyline.

Tales of the Abyss takes place on Auldrant, a planet composed of elementary particles called Fonons. For much of Auldrant's history, only six fonons were known to exist, representing the elements of Shadow, Earth, Wind, Water, Fire and Light; but eventually a seventh fonon, controlling Sound, is discovered. Its discovery brings great chaos: using this newest Seventh Fonon allows one to read the future. One such Seventh Fonist, Yulia Jue, an important religious figure, puts in place a future for the world for thousands of years to come, with the promise of unlimited prosperity at its end. This prophecy of the future's set path becomes known as the "Score" and is documented on "Fonstones" sc…

Final Fantasy IV Review

Created by: Square Enix Genre: Role-Playing Release: Jul 21, 2008 ESRB Rating: E 10+ (Everyone 10 and Older) My Score: 8.0 out of 10
Final Fantasy IV tries something a little different, and succeeds at it. In this swords and sorcery setting, a surprisingly adult storyline outshines everything and is only enhanced by the graphical update and voice-acting. 

Most of Final Fantasy IV takes place on Earth, which consists of the Overworld, inhabited by humans, and the Underworld, inhabited by the Dwarves. An artificial moon orbits the planet, upon which the Lunarians live. The Lunarians are a race of beings from a world destroyed which became the asteroid belt, and are identified by a moon-shape crest on their foreheads. They created this artificial moon, resting until a time they believe their kind can co-exist with humans.
The Good:
Final Fantasy IV for the GameBoy Advance did not have me convinced. After spending about 10 minutes in the game, I was done and looking for something else to play. T…

X-Men Destiny

Created by: Activision and Silicon Knights  Genre: Action Release: Sep 27, 2011  ESRB Rating: T (Teen) My Score: 8 out of 10
Jump into this all new story and adventure with all your favorite X-men and Brotherhood characters! As well as three new characters from you to choose from. 

The game starts off right after the evil sentinel Bastion has killed Professor X, before the X-Men could finish Bastion off. But with Bastion defeated and the Professor dead, Magneto takes off into hiding feeling that it was his fault that his friend is dead and the X-Men have pick up the pieces and start all over again. A few months later the scene shows everyone in San Francisco at a rally to bring together mutants and humans, and in the crowed they show three different people, a high school  football player named Grant Alexander, a Japanese girl named Aimi Yoshida who was a stow away on a boat, and the son of the leader of an anti-mutant group named Adrain Lucia. And this is where you choose which one you wou…

Angry Birds Space

So let's be honest, everyone at this point has probably played Angry Birds. The Rovio created physics puzzler created a revolution on the iPhone, selling over a million copies throughout the various platforms. Angry Birds Space does something that many thought it couldn't: put a new layer of fun into the classic formula. You still pull back the slingshot to launch your bird, yet now instead of a straight line there's gravity wells to take into account. These wells offer a whole new way to attack those pigs, enabling you to attack from behind. The gravity is shown by a blue outline often surrounding a planet. The birds that everyone knows and loves are back, featuring the classic general red, the bomb black, and the blue that splits up. Also joining the party are the giant green bird (for knocking down structures) and the square bird (an ice grenade type). These new birds add a surprisingly large amount of strategy to this game, and it's a blast. The biggest prob…

FIFA Soccer 12

My Score: 9.2 out of 10
Fifa 2012 is a simulation of football being displayed to the entire world. Close "On-Pro" Cameras and realistic "Precision Dribbling" makes you feel like you are at Stamford Bridge battling out with your blue kit, for the Blues club. The online play is outstanding, with a Premiere League feel. You rack up wins to gain divisions against opponents, and if you go on a cold streak, you will be relegated just like in any top league in the world! Every month there is a cup window, play your best during the window you will move right on up the cup ladder. You also can play on an online club with friends, which was in 2011, as well as online friendlies are still implemented, but even friendly matches is a cup match and you earn EA level as you play. Virtual Pro is back in this 2012 edition, and even better. With new physics and outstanding team play with computer teammates, it feels exactly like you are playing with your buddies online. You can beco…

Shadows Of The Damned

My Score: 7 out of 10
In Shadows Of The Damned you play the game as a hot-shot Mexican demon hunter named Garcia Hotspur, who, after a run in with the lord of demons named Fleming kidnaps Garcia's girlfriend, is now on a hunt through hell to get the love of his life back. With the help with his ex demon friend Johnson (a floating skull who transforms into his weapons), guides you through hell to the end but will that be enough to bring Garcia and his girlfriend back together? You will have to play to find out!
With this being a demon hunter game this is in no way like other games like Devil May Cry or others. This game is on its own level. In this action packed game there is excitement and things that will scare the crap right out of you around every corner. And unlike normal demon hunting this game is just full of perverted humor that will have you laughing and enjoying yourself throughout the story. And while playing if you get stuck at a certain part not to worry Johnson always…

Dark Souls

My Score: 9.5 out of 10
Dark Souls starts you off with no hope at all, and it doesn't get much better as you progress through the game. This is almost as if to say "If you can't make it through the first hour, don't waste any more of your time." This attitude carries over throughout the whole game. If you're not a hardcore gamer, you will very much dislike Dark Souls. Your character (created carefully from the start) is a chosen of sorts from an undead asylum, congratulations - it's now your full time job to try to stay alive for more than a standard blink of an eye, and while you're working THAT full time job, your other full time job is to die quite often, and attempt to learn from your mistakes in order to better your character, and your chances of not succumbing to "rage quitting", which is also a requirement for the job. I'm not going to lie, there were a few times throughout my adventure where I had to turn off my system and get so…

Super Smash Bros. Brawl

My Score: 9 out of 10
The number of playable characters that players can control in Brawl has grown from that in Super Smash Bros. Melee; Brawl is the first game in the series to expand past Nintendo characters and allow players to control third-party characters. Like its predecessors, the object of Brawl is to knock an opponent off the screen. It includes a more extensive single-player mode than its predecessors, known as The Subspace Emissary. This mode is a plot-driven,side-scrollingbeat 'em up featuring computer-generated cut scenes and playable characters from the game.Brawl also supports multiplayer battles with up to four combatants, and is the first game of its franchise to feature online battles via the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. The game can also be uniquely played on four controllers, which include the Classic Controller, GameCube Controller, Wii Remote and Nunchuk and Wii Remote, simultaneously.
An excellent mix of characters and an alluring co-op campaign story mode pr…

Mario Party 9

My Score: 7.1 out of 10
Full disclosure: I've never really cared for Mario. It's not that I don't like him or his colorful gang of ever-growing friends, I just don't care. I have however played every single Mario Party game since the first, and generally enjoyed them. Mario's had quite a few large parties in his day, but his ninth outing really mixes up the repetitive formula. Players now move together through a set path, no more lone wolf and endless circles around the board. No more golden stars (well, that you can collect, anyway), and no more mini games after everybody has played their turn, those are now activated via spaces on the board. Instead there's a greater focus on teamwork, inevitably screwing over your whole team, fighting your team, and strategical thinking in order to look out for number 1.
Mario Party 9 focuses on what it does best, which is being a party game. None of the mini games are overly simple, or brutally difficult - leaving you to cl…

Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves

My Score: 8.5 out of 10
Sly has more than a few things going for him... One of those things is he has friends. Connections old and new make appearances in the game leaving you sure of one thing - there are a lot more talking animals involved in this heist. The HUB world structure is back as well, for better or for worse, as if ThiefNet. Following the events of Sly 2 (which there is a very clever recap for those who might have forgotten), your main objective is to get the band together for one more jam - and you're going to need all the help you can get. The story in Sly 3 has you once again stealing something that rightfully belonged to you in the first place, which is the Cooper family vault. Band of Thieves didn't focus on something that originally belonged to Sly, and that general idea hurt it.
Consistency is something you're going to be hearing a lot about during the course of this review, because consistency is something Sly Cooper does right (and kind of wring too...…

NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams

My Score: 7 out of 10
Every night, dreams are played out in Nightopia and Nightmare, the two parts of the dream world. In Nightopia, distinct aspects of dreamers' personalities are represented by luminous colored spheres known as "Ideya". However, Wizeman the Wicked, is stealing this dream energy from sleeping visitors to gather power to take control of Nightopia.To achieve this, he creates numerous beings called "Nightmaren", including  NiGHTS. However, NiGHTS rebels against Wizeman, and attempts to save Nightopia.
Very few times will anyone see me praise the music selection in a video game. Mostly, to me, the music is just there (it's called "BGM" for a reason). But for NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams, one of the greatest things is has going for it is the musical selection. Some songs have vocals, others are just absolutely stunning all-music numbers. Every song adds something to the level, to the story, and to the game overall - and that's no smal…

Pokemon Snap

My Score: 8.9 out of 10
Originally released in 1999 for the Nintendo 64, Pokemon Snap takes you away from the hustle and bustle of the every day Pokemaster lifestyle of turn-based battles, raising monsters, and obliterating the Elite Four. On this vacation away from the standard formula, taking pictures on a rail-cart through a handful of courses take center stage. Now Pokegamers get to play this great title again years later on the Nintendo Wii's Virtual Console - and it's just as fun as we all remember.
Everything about Pokemon Snap oozes from that particular niche among Pokemon players everywhere. It's a game that is challenging, yet easily mastered compared to other games, and is dripping with replay value. You won't want to replay through the game from a fresh save file to get something you've missed, but rather just to relive the experience - and only a few games are that special. The courses all have a certain personality, and with 70 out of the original 150…

Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards

My Score: 7.7 out of 10
Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards isn't a remake or an enhanced version of the Nintendo 64 original, it's just a port. But that's not a bad thing at all, in fact, the port staying true to its original form offers a nostalgia that HD graphics (which the Wii isn't capable of in the first place), and new wacky additions couldn't replicate.You are Kirby, and it is your job to retrieve all of the crystal shards, and bring piece to the world by sucking up enemies and stealing their powers / mixing their powers, and platforming through levels with more than a few bosses thrown in the mix.
When I bought this game off of the Wii Shop channel, I was skeptical to say the least. After all, it's a game from two generations ago that costs about the same as a game from last generation. But after only a good solid hour of play-time, I knew that my $10, and my time did not go to waste. Kirby 64 is fun, the platforming is thought-provoking, and mixing enemy at…

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as King

My Score: 5.5 out of 10
My Life as King puts you in the shoes of a young king who's job is to manage a walled-in city by building businesses, houses, guilds, etc. and hiring explorers from far and wide to scope out the lands that surround your small community. There's a lot more to the game, but this is what it all boils down to. You choose where to put buildings, invest money into researching new items for certain shops, and keeping the troops busy with quest after quest. I got this game when it came out in 2008. I was 16 years old and this game was great for those lonely days back where I lived at the time. But now that I find myself coming back to it, I noticed a lot of complaints that I never really saw before. Maybe it's my sophisticated gaming palette, or maybe I didn't really care back then - but one things for sure, and that's the fact that I care now.
Being the cute king is fun - during the day I usually sent my loyal warriors out on quests I had assigned …