Tag Archives: Review

The Breakdown: Senran Kagura Burst

Senran Kagura BurstSystem: Nintendo 3DS/Publisher: XSEED Games/Developer: Tamsoft/Players: 1/Release Date: 11-14-13

There’s a steady pattern when it comes to 2D brawlers. You walk forward, some dudes show up, you bust some heads, and then told “GO”. Lather, rinse, repeat. It’s been like this since the beginning, and almost unchanging. Sure you got the occasional extra move, super power, or RPG elements, but the core gameplay remains the same. Enter Senran Kagura Burst, a game that aims to deliver with fast-paced action and and bountiful plot. Does the game deliver a well-rounded experience, or does it deflate from the genre it is? Hit the jump to find out!

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PC Engine Discussion/Review : Bonk’s Adventure

While I’m still writing an article lamenting my childhood ignorance of the Turbografx16 partially because of the shitty marketing and naming that went into its American console, let’s talk about one of the first games I was able to experience thanks to the wii’s virtual console, Bonk’s Adventure!

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Heellllp, I’m falling off the title screen!!!

The first in a trilogy, a spinoff and some ports here and there, Bonk was brought back into the spotlight recently with news of his revival.  We’ll probably never see that revival because Hudson went under soon after the news broke, but considering their half-assed multiplayer in the revival of Dungeon Explorer it might be for the better (More on that game in a future post). Continue reading

Review : Sleeping Dogs

Sandbox games are not typically the most enjoyable experiences for me.  Aside from Infamous 1/2, Red Dead Redemption, Crackdown…. alright, maybe it’s just GTA that I think sucks ass.  Those early trailers got me pumped really fast, and the game was quite well advertised.  There’s no Wei they could fuck up a game like this, right?

Just to get it out of the Wei, the protagonist, his name is Wei Shen, and yes you can expect a bunch of shitty puns in this review.

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The Breakdown: The eXceed Collection

System: PC/Publisher: Nyu Media/Developer: Tennen-sozai/Players: 1/Release Date: 3/29/12

The shmup genre, a playstyle that’s lived longer than most of us on the staff. As we played these games and grew, our skills were honed to the point that memorization and bullet dodging became second nature. As time went on, a desire for a more… difficult approach arose, and along came the Bullet Hell Shooter. Like watching a fireworks show, the screen is littered with bullets with narrow passages of escape. Thanks to small hitboxes, escape was somewhat easy, and pretty cool at that. So in the heap of Bullet Hell Shooters comes a series of indie games called eXceed. The three games in the series sought to change things up a bit by introducing certain mechanics to the standard Bullet Hell formula. And now, they’re in a complete little package for a small price. Is it worth getting all three, getting part of ’em, or not bothering at all? After the jump, I breakdown each game of The eXceed Collection.

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The Breakdown – ICO

System: PS2, PS3 (reviewed)/Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment/Developer: Team Ico/Players: 1 (2 after beating game)/Released: September 21, 2001, September 27, 2011

Picture if you will, the beginning of a console. From the moment it’s in its concept stages to when it’s finally out the door and into the homes of consumers, the company that makes it wants it to be successful. It does everything in its power to prove that the console is worth your hard-earned dollars. Features, controls, ergonomics, power… all of these are important to the console. But most of all, the games make the console, and it is the games that will shape the future of your console. And so, the company picks from a bushel of games to showcase around the launch period to show the public. You want to wow these people to buy your product. Since this is a new console, everyone’s going to go on about the graphics. Well, here’s a game that can wow you, while doing a few nifty things on the side. This was the reality back during the PS2’s early life when ICO was released. 10 years later, do those same enamored feelings still hold true for ICO? After the jump, I break down ICO.

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The Breakdown – Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance

System: GBA/Publisher: Konami/Developer: Konami/Players: 1/Released/Sep. 16, 2002

While the world enjoys the new Harmony that descended on the downloadable game scene, I took the time to go out and buy an old Harmony on the GBA. Released after Circle of the Moon, Harmony of Dissonance released during a sort of renaissance period for the series as Castlevania was once again a force to be reckoned with in the gaming scene after the release of SoTN. However, this entry was seen as a bit lackluster, and to this day is seen as the black sheep of the post-SoTN games. Were the initial critiques spot on? Has the game aged better as time went on. Or should it have been a forgotten note? After the break, I breakdown Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance.

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Late to the Party Reviews : Super Mario 3D Land

I was going to join this party a little later on down the road, but something interesting happened while filming our upcoming podcast for The Wired Fish.  While discussing our biggest disappointments of 2011 (spoiler), Hachi called out Super Mario 3D land as his disappointment.  Not that it was a bad game, but rather that it felt like it was missing something.  From what I experienced playing the demo at Comic Con, I loved it, and in the back of my mind was hoping that his claims were full of shit, and that maybe he doesn’t know how to handle the 3DS nub properly, so I could laughingly say “You’re playing the game wrong”.  That same night, I decided to debunk his claim one level at a time…

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Here comes a new challenger!

After a little more than a week, a few thousand matches, and a hand cramp or two, I think a review of Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 (Umvc3) is in order. I am very impressed with the overall rebalancing of the game. It seems Capcom really took the time to research problems within the original and tried their best to not make the same mistakes. For example, the DHC glitch is now removed from the game and I couldn’t be happier. Continue reading

Anime Theater: Vampire Wars

Do you like this image? Good, because you won't be seeing it in the film.

They say that great art can be measured by the extremity of the response it elicits in the viewer. Although I can definitely see their point, I don’t agree with that since it makes for too broad a definition. This is why we get people who throw fresh produce at a canvas and call it art, which then further implies that any child with basic motor functions can create art.

But let us, for a second, assume that this definition is correct. If it is, then Vampire Wars might be the greatest work of art ever created. Why? Because it inspires such a strong feeling of revulsion that one cannot help but respond to it. It is repulsive to all six of the senses (yes, even the illusory “sixth sense” is damaged by this crap) and is a truly startling example of how to waste an hour of your life. Get ready, folks, this one is going to be a doozy.

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Review: Radiant Historia

Radiant Historia is Atlus’ latest role-playing game for the Nintendo DS. This time traveling adventure about the world’s grim future, a raging war for power, and the journey to set history on its true path, takes from the RPGs of the past and puts a new spin on them. The result is a deeply engaging story with fun and creative gameplay that may prove to stand the test of time.

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Review in Progress #2 : Bulletstorm (PS3)

Current Status : Campaign cleared (Very Hard).

Next Update : Covering my Echoes mode and multiplayer experience.

Nothing says good boxart like a foot in the face (if you got the limited edition)

Part I : Bulletstorm at its hardest.

Fucking Ishi, if you block my slide one more time, I’m going to strangle you.

Before anything, I gotta admit, I hate games like Halo and Gears of War when it comes to fps games. Growing up on the old wad based games like Doom, Heretic and Hexen and the early games that used 3d models (Unreal Tournament before the awful sequels and Quake 2/3) along with many of their custom mods and maps, I did not really enjoy the sluggish nature of either game whenever I would gather with some friends to play… Nowadays I just say “No thanks, give me a call if you put on Timesplitters”.

Bulletstorm’s claim to fame is that it is different than every other boring fps on the market today. I didn’t know what to think, coming from People Can Fly and Epic, the company responsible for both Gears of War and Unreal Tournament. Nowadays, I don’t know what the fuck my computer can run when it comes to gaming, and since I have enough modded games to go back to on the PC, I ended up getting the PS3 version of Bulletstorm.

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Review in Progress #1 : Final Fantasy II (PSP)

Current Status : Main Game and Soul of Rebirth complete. Will touch on bonus dungeons down the road if I get the time.

Clear Time – Main Game : 29:38 Soul of Rebirth : 09:09

Review table of contents :

  • Part 1 – Covers the main campaign
  • Part 2 – Soul of Rebirth
  • Part 3 – The Wrap-Up  (for you impatient readers)

I kinda like the purple theme going on in the boxart

Part 1 : Final Fantasy II’s Main Quest

Ah, Final Fantasy II, considered one of the bastard children of the series. Before I get to the game proper, it must be mentioned that a good portion of the time between the 15 and 27 or 28 hour mark was spent grinding spells and getting the party to reasonable stats for the run through the final dungeons… while it’s possible to spam cure on the field (poisoned characters required to abuse) everything else had to be upgraded in battle…. I stopped after getting Firion’s Ultima to level 10 and Maria’s Flare to 10.

Thankfully, spell grinding isn’t entirely bad (at the higher levels). Since you can set commands to memory in the psp version, it becomes a simple matter of holding down the X button with something heavy and going on to do personal business such as using the bathroom, sending a text message, taking some hot potato skins out of the oven… grinding here rocks because it doesn’t tie you to the screen/controller. The only issue is that spells can only level up once in a given fight, so at a certain point, no spell xp is awarded.

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