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Showing posts from 2013

Batman Arkham Origins Review

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Released: October 25, 2013
Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PC, Wii U
Players: 1, Online 3-8
ESRB Rating: T (Blood, Drug Reference, Language, Mild Suggestive Themes, Violence)
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
Developers: WB Games Montreal, Splash Damage

Who remembers way back in 2009 when Rocksteady Games released Batman Arkham Asylum?  I for one was stunned at the fact we finally had an amazing Batman game after all these years.  Then I heard about Arkham City and my heart pounded with excitement.  When I finally put the disc in my Xbox 360 I was stunned again.  They took the amazing Batman game and made it better!  Then I heard about Arkham Origins and once again I got excited.  So Rocksteady wasn't making it, I figured Warner Bros. would work from what they started and create a whole new experience that once again stunned me.

What we got however is a sort of connect the dots Batman game.  While still great, it doesn't feel like its own original game.  This time we have a younger, l…

LEGO Marvel Super Heroes Review

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Released: October 22, 2013
Platforms: PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4
Players: 1-2
ESRB Rating: E10+ (Cartoon Violence)
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
Developer: Traveler's Tales

I'm no stranger to the LEGO games.  Ever since LEGO Star Wars hit back in 2005 I have been hooked.  In fact the only one I haven't played is LEGO Indiana Jones 2.  Being around from the beginning has offered an in-depth look at how this series has evolved and I believe that this is their best one yet.

Continuing the tradition started in LEGO Batman 2 the characters are all fully voiced.  Since this is an original story I stand that it was a good idea, seeing how in the past with LEGO Batman's original story not having any dialogue I was a tad lost.  The game play is overall very similar to past games.  You still destroy the environment to collect studs, enemy characters still break apart, and puzzles still require a mix of characters to complete everything in a level.  Luckily in this game most c…

Pokemon X and Y Review

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You know the feeling you get when something you love is evolving (pun not intended)? It's this dangerous feeling full of "I can't wait!" and "But what if..." and it's all you can do to try to avoid spoiling the whole thing for yourself and everyone around you by over-saturating your every being with it. I got this feeling, and I got it big time for Pokemon Y. The sixth generation of Pokemon finally pulling out all the stops. After years of a safe and profitable formula - here comes Generation 6. Pokemon Y doesn't rock the boat by changing the recipe (why would it?), but it adds more to something we already thought was perfect, which I thought would have been impossible.

The narrative this time around is pretty intense. Instead of an evil team of thieves looking to make a quick buck, or some evangelists trying to free Pokemon from slavery - Pokemon Y provides a story of somebody who is super pissed off and just wants everybody dead. It's quite a d…

Far Cry 3 Review

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Released: December 4, 2012
Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Players: 1, Online 2-4 Co-op, 2-14 Competitive
ESRB Rating: M (Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Nudity, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Drugs)
Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer: Ubisoft Montreal

Not many games can set a bleak and very mature tone right out of the gate and have it turn into a fun and crazy experience, but Far Cry 3 manages to do so with style.  You play as Jason Brody who within the first 5 minutes goes from raunchy party boy to accidentally ramming a machete through a man's throat.  His friends, brothers, and girlfriend have also been captured by the crazy (yet strangely charismatic) Vaas.  After Jason escapes the fun and crazy truly begin.

Far Cry 3 is set in an open world environment that also wants to kill you.  Not only do you have patrols of Vaas' pirates all over the place, but you also have the fun of tigers, bears, sharks, and other predators that will attack you.  The animals actually play …

XCOM: Enemy Unknown

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XCOM Enemy Unknown was the game I never knew I wanted. I usually avoid strategy games as I'm not very good at them, but I figured since it was free thanks to PS+ I'd try it. I was very pleasantly surprised. XCOM is the group in charge of protecting the Earth from the alien invasion. The opening tutorial does an excellent job of showing how to move your troops and control your characters. The tutorial is split into a few sections, a good idea for how much there is to learn.

First off, the game play. XCOM is a tactical shooter which gives you a slanted view of the action that you are free to rotate. You start with a squad of four and through the course of leveling up you can increase your squad and a few other helpful things. Each person gets two actions per turn which can be used to move, shoot, go into over-watch, reload, etc. As you can see from the picture movement is outlined to a certain area. The blue costs one move, but you can dash into an extended yellow area.
Comba…

Kingdom Hearts 1.5 HD Remix Review

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Originally, I was going to do all of these games separately, as I did Sly Cooper and am currently doing Ratchet and Clank, and Mass Effect. But this collection is much more about the collection as a whole than the other HD collections out there - so it gets reviewed as such! Mind you, I will still be reviewing each game separately, but I have way to much on my plate already as far as writing reviews goes, so that's far back on the queue for now.

So, as every form of publicity would lead you to believe, this is a three game collection of the first three Kingdom Hearts (in Chronological order, not by year made). This, however, is false advertising and the overall score will be severely affected by this. First of all, the very FIRST game in the chronological order would be Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep for the PSP, and this collection starts the party at Kingdom Hearts 1. Second, the third game featured in this collection is actually a painfully boring (albeit, informative) 3 hour …

Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine Review

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In writing this review, I'm not sure which will become more apparent to the reader... My growing age, or my love for the 90's and this game. Hopefully it's the latter - as Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine perfectly embodies the very ideal Action / Puzzle game for its time. When I saw that an emulated port was coming to the 3DS for only $4.00 - my heart nearly exploded from joy. Now, this is a port from the Game Gear version (as the 3DS's virtual console appears to be focusing on the portable aspect), so it's far inferior to the Genesis version of the game - but it includes the new puzzle mode which is great, and the game plays exactly the same across all systems.

Some enhancements found their way to Mean Bean Machine as well during the porting process. You can create a save / load file within the game whenever you want (called a "Restore Point"), and you have a plethora of other options, such as having the game fill up the whole screen or viewing it li…

Bit.Trip Presents... Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien Review

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This game is ridiculous, aside from just the title. But it's a good ridiculous. I'll tell you right now, I seriously have no problem with this game, I have no complaints. You might find yourself disagreeing with my final score for this game because of that fact. The only thing keeping this game from a perfect 10/10 is simply that there's just not enough of it! Runner 2 is all about rhythm. People have compared it to learning an instrument, and I'm not going to disagree with them. Jumping, sliding, dancing, collecting - they're all notes and chords that build up on each other and create a masterpiece of chip tune music.

The narrative is fantastic for what this game is. Charles Martinet (AKA - the voice of Mario) narrates this fascinating tale of Commander Video and friends on their psychedelic Bit.Trip through many detailed environments. Charles doesn't take his go-to Mario voice that he must be used to doing - he actually brings his natural "radio voice&qu…

Deadpool

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Released: June 25, 2013

Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3, PC

Players: 1

ESRB Rating: M for:
-Blood and Gore
-Intense Violence
-Mature Humor
-Sexual Content
-Strong Language

Publisher: Activision

Developer: High Moon Studios


From his humble beginnings as a villain in New Mutants in 1991 Deadpool has become a mainstream success.  The Merc With the Mouth has been in his own series of comic books, featured as a playable character in both of the Marvel Ultimate Alliance games and Marvel vs Capcom 3, and even was in 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine.  Now, thanks to Activision and High Moon Studios (the studio behind the excellent War for Cybertron and Fall of Cybertron games) we have Deadpool in his very own video game.

Lets get this out of the way quickly, this game is just downright vulgar.  Usually that doesn't bother me (the only other time was Bulletstorm), but this was over the top in my mind.  Starting in Deadpool's crap apartment it's pretty much instantly set that he is com…

Fuse Review

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When I saw other reputable reviewers giving this game lukewarm scores, I was not a happy camper. I love Insomniac, and don't much dislike EA anymore (after doing away with online passes, and that sweet Humble Origin Bundle). To think that the creators of Ratchet and Clank made a game that wasn't amazing was almost depressing to me. Well, there's a thing about reviews, and video games being an art form - it's all about the player's opinion, likes, and dislikes. So, in my humble opinion, Fuse is one of the finest Third-Person Shooter offerings of this generation, and I'll gladly tell you why.

First, let's talk narrative. Easily, this is the weakest part of the game - but I'm not sure I'm comfortable saying that it's as bad as most other people say it is. Overstrike 9 is comprised of a team of 4 mercenaries, and they're sent on a mission for a client who wants them to destroy something called "Fuse" (Ahhh, I see where they got the ti…

The Last Remnant Review

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I'll start with a rather somber thought... The Last Remnant - while initially cool - is a boring game. Long cut-scenes in which nothing of interest happens, and a battle system that starts off strong but ends up repetitive really take away from what promise this game had. The characters, for the most part are actually fairly likable, and the voice acting is mostly okay. I played it on the PC, so I understand I didn't have to deal with a lot of bugs and unfortunate side effects of the original 360 version. The graphics are good, but the scenery doesn't live up to how the game should look because of the character model detail.
Is The Last Remnant a good game? Heck, I think it is. It's a good game in purest form. It's a safe game. Safe as in, if you're throwing a party, are you going to order pizza, or an exotic foreign cuisine that you yourself haven't even tried. Probably pizza, right? All the staples of the JRPG are in place here: whiny girls and boys, wei…

Battleblock Theater

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This year is the year that it becomes essential for owners of an Xbox 360, or a PlayStation 3 to start looking at what the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network have to offer. With The Behemoth's Battleblock Theater being preceded by Bit.Trip Presents Runner 2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien - this early in the year, I'm certain that 2013 will be the best year for bite-sized downloadable games. Particularly games that move as fast as Battleblock Theater. With the Steam release, there's a lot more added features, such as an integrated Steam Workshop, which makes sharing player-created content so much easier. There's also quite a few more animations, customization options, and is another great reason to play this game even more.
The story in this game is just plain silly. There's the classic poop humor, and childish laughs that we saw in Castle Crashers (this game was created by the same development team), and even some jokes that flew under the radar the first ti…

Persona 4 Arena Review

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If you know me well enough, or read up on our older reviews - you know I'm familiar with Persona. In fact, the only game to this day to get a 10/10 on The Level Lounge is Persona 3 Portable for the Sony PSP. While this game is VERY different, it still has the same look and feel of when I think "Persona". Just picking what you want to do in this game is exciting, because even the menus ooze style. Bright colors, flashy seizure-inducing moves in fights, along with the pop and fuzz of what Persona means to people. Persona 4 Arena got it right, this feels like you're playing a Persona game.


The fighting is fast, easy to control (compared to other fighting games), and makes "chaotic" seem like a boring word, not nearly up to caliber to describe what happens in this game during a 60-second fight. All of the characters have the basics, punch, kick, summoning a large spirit creature out of thin air. You know, the basics. But you will be able to familiarize yourself …