You Are Browsing ' Editorials ' Category

No Gravatar

I previously reviewed DOOM when it came out last year. You can read that review here. Today I want to look at some of the ways DOOM has changed and improved.

I had said that the biggest strength of the game was the single player mode and while I still believe that is true, I do feel a lot of work has gone into the multiplayer to make it work a lot better. It still isn’t perfect, but the DLC and the patches have gone a long way to take a game whose online was mediocre at best, and greatly improve it. It feels smoother, more fluid and the a.i. bots just work well. They saw what wasn’t working, took fan feedback and went to work on making it better. I can actually enjoy it a lot more now and would recommend trying it out.

The various additional modes and changes added to the game for single player also stand out. It is simple stuff like Arcade Mode that just gives the game a ton of replayability and increases the fun. Bethesda and id Software realized what the fans were really there for and gave it to them in great detail. They also added options to make the game feel even more like classic Doom while still keeping everything modern. It was classy, and it was well done.

Speaking of giving the fans what they want, SnapMap has had the biggest improvements. While it always had good content, there was no doubt that it was mainly there to help multiplayer.  id Software did a great job revamping it and allowing fans to use it in a manner much more like classic Doom mods. There is so much more variety now and the replay value is now bottomless. This was the best thing that could have been done, and I give major props to Bethesda and id Software for taking the time to overhaul SnapMap and allowing it to reach its true potential. Stuff like that makes gaming fun,

Overall, the changes made to DOOM since its release have been for the better. The game was amazing then and is even more amazing now. If you haven’t checked it out yet, you should do so!

 

By N64Memories On 17 Apr, 2017 At 08:26 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, NINTENDO, Old School Otaku, Previews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarBy Steven Smith

GoldenEye 007 remains one of the most popular all-time console games. I wrote for +Nintendo Life here as to why I replay it so much as well as this article about its never-released Xbox Live version and this article on the blog re-playing the Wii version.

It’s a seminal console FPS, proving the genre didn’t have to be PC-only if developers could find a unique slant. And this is exactly what Rare managed to do back in the mid-90s.
As you know, GoldenEye 007 has 18 main storyline levels and two bonus levels for completing Secret Agent and then the über tough 00 Agent setting. Below I have ranked all 20 levels based on how much I enjoy replaying them individually.

20. Surface 1

Its non-linear environment is a definite positive; being able to roam freely around helps make the stealth element more engaging. However, the environment is drab and sparse and the objectives through all difficultly levels aren’t anything to shout about. I only re-play this if I am recompleting the game.

19. Runway

I like how similar to the film its environment is but that’s as far as my enjoyment for this level goes to be honest. It’s a small, linear level really; the tank is slow and there’s no real skill involved in completing the objectives.

18. Surface 2

The redeeming feature from the first Surface is that the objectives are more of a challenge. It’s still drab though – a shame the Xbox Live version didn’t see the light of day because it really spruced up the visuals of this level.

17. Silo

I do like racing through for the target time cheat but it is far too linear and repetitive to have longevity in the enjoyment stakes. Scientists just get in the way too….

16. Bunker 1

Its semi-non linear structure allows for some stealth – picking off cameras and enemies hoping for minimal disruption. However, I just can’t get over the missing sections that suddenly appear in Bunker 2 and link the whole facility together. It just makes Bunker 1 not feel quite right…

15. Egyptian

It’s so far down my list because of the utter underwhelming feeling I got playing it for the first time once I had toiled through 00 Agent. It just didn’t feel worth the trouble at the time. Although facing off against Baron Samedi is cool and the level has so many nooks and crannies for enemies to pick you off from. Some skill is needed.

14. Jungle

Jungle reminds me of Turok’s opening quite a bit – the scenery and fogging create a foreboding atmosphere. A player does need to sneak through and carefully pick people off in the early stages in order to conserve health for later on. I like facing off against Xenia as a bit of a mini boss and the weaponry gets fun. The biggest challenge is the target time because your usual tactics have to go out the window.

13. Frigate

I can still get lost on this level! For some reason that’s why I like it and re-play it. I have never really managed to learn its layout off by heart and I probably won’t. However, for some, I can see why this level might be a bit drab and easy to fly through.

12. Statue

This is quite a clever level because of the designers’ use of repetitive scenery to confuse the player and get them lost. If one memorises some certain junk in the level then it isn’t too hard to whizz around, however. Bad guys can pop up from anywhere around you and the flight recorder can land in a few different places to keep you on your toes.

11. Bunker 2

A much better version – the player can roam freely through the corridors and rooms in any chosen direction in order to complete objectives as efficiently as possible. The challenge leaps between Agent and Secret Agent – one must decide on a tactic for completing it and stick to it. For example, I methodically pick off every bad guy in the level – there are 50-odd by the way – and happily let it take as long as it needs. Some like to race through completing objectives and killing when necessary. However, this doesn’t work for me.

10. Depot

What I like about it is that the level is linear in terms of completing the objectives and subsequently getting to the train yet there’s so much to explore and roam freely for if you’re on Agent, for example. I remember exploring every corner of every place looking for some sort of secret or Easter Egg. It also gets super tough on 00 Agent so a good level all round.

9. Streets

Driving through the streets in a tank, crushing anything in your path is still a lot of fun even if it is rather slow. Yet, on foot, there are back streets to explore and objectives to complete on harder settings. On foot is also the best way to complete the target time for a cheat – just get your head down, memorise the route and strafe your heart out!

8. Control

This is a brilliant level for many reasons: a mixture of linear and non-linear structure for completing objectives; a well-pitched difficulty increase; lots of different scenery in the facility with some good visuals still; and a hugely tense battle at the end both in protecting Natalya and the subsequent race to the end. Yes, protecting her is annoying and massively tough on 00 Agent but it makes the level what it is. It’s at number eight because it is one of the toughest levels in the game and will drive you insane on 00 Agent.

7. Caverns

A huge, sprawling level that can be raced through with expert marksmanship or taken slowly with stealth. Objectives’ challenge increase well like in Control but it feels more achievable on 00 Agent. Again, some good weaponry on display and it introduces some new scenery such as the doors and the corridors. I like how it can be tense at the end but not off-the-chart-tense like Control is.

6. Archives

Archives for me is fun because it is a race – get out of the room, get to Natalya, get out on to the streets. This race gets tougher and tougher as you up the difficulty and I don’t think there’s any other way to approach it. Stealth just doesn’t work on here and that’s tough!

5. Train

Probably the most linear stage, a criticism of mine earlier on, but its linear nature creates a great feeling of claustrophobia on the train. There’s nowhere to hide, no method of escape from fire other than ploughing forward. Therefore, one must be on one’s best form to pick off everyone as quickly as possible especially on 00 Agent. Although experts can memorise their appearance, I like how enemies pop up behind you, follow you and can cause loss of health if one forgets. Also, try to kill Trevelyan at the end – apparently it’s possible!

4. Dam

This one is a little nostalgia-driven because for 99% of us, it was our first experience with the game and the opening level epitomises my love for GoldenEye 007 because of this memory. It is still a good level – large and even larger when you have to explore what is going on underneath the surface of the dam. Some combination of blasting enemies and picking them off covertly is the best approach and, if you have an Action Replay, you can reach that fabled island across from the dam!

3. Cradle

Another race – this time in pursuit of Trevelyan once and for all. It’s tough because of the enemies ; they’re not your priority for once! Sometimes you need to get them if they’re in your way but ultimately the death of Trevelyan is your goal and this needs to be the focus. Well-placed head shots get him to say “Finish the job, James!” quicker and this is your aim. I like it because it has the right level of tension and a variety of FPS skills are needed to complete it. Chasing Trevelyan around is fun and the level is the right size for this kind of objective. Pitched well all round by the +Rare Ltd developers.

2. Facility

A fantastically well-pitched level. From picking off a faeces-full guard and dropping into the toilet, to blasting those bottling tanks, the level is full of great moments and challenge. It’s quite claustrophobic with little room to hide and pick off enemies. Racing through proves to be the best method and has to be in order to achieve that insanely difficult target time on 00 Agent. It’s so well-recreated from the film and is genuinely the most  I feel like James Bond in this and any other James Bond game on any console. Sublime for me.

1. Aztec

A superb level and a wonderful present from Rare for completing Secret Agent. In terms of reward satisfaction, this should have been given for completing 00 Agent but then not as many people may have got to enjoy it. It looks fantastic, it has an array of scenery and places to explore and it really challenges the gamer to use many skills to complete the objectives. Not only that, you get to battle Jaws. Jaws! Yes, you can just get face-to-chest with him and blast him to death but that doesn’t matter because it’s surreal to be battling him in the first place. We are introduced to the laser gun and your aim is to get that rocket into space. I love this level and happily replay it when I get the chance. It can still get me – I’ve never perfected it and this gives it longevity for me.
Steven Smith runs the N64Memories Twitter and Facebook pages as well as its blog – www.n64memories.blogspot.co.uk
By otakuman5000 On 16 Apr, 2017 At 09:23 PM | Categorized As Animation, Editorials, Featured, NINTENDO, PC Games, PlayStation, ROG Humor, Videos | With 0 Comments

No GravatarIn a timed exclusive with the creator of the show, The Scarlet Derby Plays comes to Real Otaku Gamer. This is a new series from my good friend Mike Cervantes. This is a very entertaining show. We are glad to showcase the show on Real Otaku Gamer.

 

 

By Jonathan Balofsky On 16 Apr, 2017 At 03:18 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No Gravatar

This past week Nintendo held a direct in which they showed many things, but one thing that stood out was Project Mekuru. many might dismiss this game as being filler, or eshop junk, but old school fans have been looking at it differently. Given what was shown of the gameplay, there is a strong feeling by many that Project Mekuru is the spiritual sequel to the Bomeberman series, done by Nintendo themselves.

After some thought, I have come to agree with these thoughts. Project Mekuru shows a lot of innovation but clearly is built on the same premise as Bomberman. It has a different style and mechanics, but the essence is still there. This isn’t a bad thing by any means. Konami has been very…spotty of late and while Super Bomberman R is a nice return to form, a Bomberman successor made by Nintendo will appeal to many who have grown frustrated with Konami. As well, it already looks to have that Nintendo polish and charm. It has more than enough to set it apart.

It would be nice for Project Mekuru to have identifiable protagonists and not just miis, but right now the game looks like the best twist on the formula we have ever seen. It takes the puzzle elements of Bomberman and adds an Othello element to them for deeper gameplay. As well  it brings in elements of Mario Party and Super Smash Bros as well for a new way of looking at it. Plus the promised items already make this even more intriguing.

I hope Project Mekuru is a major hit for Nintendo and that they have even more to show. Right now, it looks like they are giving fans what they have wanted for a long time, and that is good. This makes me hopeful that Nintendo will do more projects like this going forward.

 

 

….

 

The above was the opinion solely of the author and doesn’t necessarily reflect the views of Real Otaku Gamer or its staff.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 15 Apr, 2017 At 09:11 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarThe Nintendo Switch has proven itself to be a major hit, with confirmed US sales of 906 000 in March and speculation putting worldwide sales at 2.4 millions in the same time period. More and more developers are announcing their games for the Switch. One publisher that was on board from the beginning announcement of the system is Bethesda Softworks, who are bringing The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim to the Switch. This is a welcome addition to the library and even though it is coming late, many are excited at the prospect of Skyrim on the go ( and there is speculation the port will have some unique elements). That said, I  feel Bethesda has another game that would also be a great fit for the system.

The Elder Scrolls: Legends would work perfectly on the Switch. The game is already a hit on PC, and it is also on mobile devices. If anything, Legends could be a good way to introduce Nintendo fans unfamiliar with the series, to The Elder Scrolls. As Switch is a handheld/console hybrid, it offers unique opportunities for play that are simply not available on PC or mobile. Add in that the game is still actively being supported wit new content, like the dark brotherhood expansion, as seen in the trailer below, and you will understand why this has  a lot of potential.

 

Some may write the game off as a wannabe Hearthstone, but it really isn’t. It is different in all the right ways, and manages to feel at home in the Elder Scrolls universe and that alone should appeal to possible new fans. The game is good and has a lot of unique ideas and elements and really helps draw you into the story. The other factor for why this is a good introduction to Elder Scrolls for Nintendo fans is simply the price. That is, the game can be started for free, and is the epitome of the Free to Start model that Nintendo seems to like.

Elder Scrolls legends is a legitimately fun and detailed game. It is something different, it is something of high quality, and it is something that would both benefit from being on a unique platform like the Switch, as well as benefit Nintendo and Bethesda by bringing in new players, which will end up helping sales of Skyrim on the Switch.

You may disagree with me on this, and you are free to do so. That said, I do want to know what you all think of this. So please, do share your thoughts.

 

No Gravatar

Warning: Spoilers ahead for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. If you have not played the game yet, be warned that this will discuss one of the major side quests of the game.

The following is a theory I have had for some time about something in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The Silver Hand are a group of werewolf hunters who are enemies of the companions, but we don’t really know much about them. But there are some hints from the game’s lore that may point to a backstory that explains their actions much more.

The Companions were the group led by Ysgramor in his conquest of Skyrim from the Falmer. They became established soon after as the warrior’s guild. They had strong anti elven sentiments for a long time, and did not allow elves to join as full companions In fact, they had issues with most non Nords, although they accepted non Nord Humans into their ranks and eventually grew to respect them after Cirroc The Lofty joined. He was of Redguard descent and changed how the companions treated human outsiders, when he was made Harbinger, especially since that was the time period when the Nords became obsessed with Nordic identity after being Atmorans culturally. The elves however, were still discriminated against until Henantier the Outsider joined. He was made a servant but slowly earned his way up over the years.  He became respected by the new members and after one of his pupils was made harbinger, he gained some level of respect. When the harbinger died of old age, he shocked the companions by appointing Henantier as the new harbinger. This led to fierce arguments and many left the companions over this, although most remained and the tradition of tolerance and acceptance became part of the companions.

But what does this have to do with the Silver Hand? One thing that always stuck out was how the Silver Hand actively targeted the companions and stole the fragments of Wuuthrad, the Axe of Ysgramor. Then the idea hit me. What if the Silver Hand were originally a group made from those who left the companions? They seem to have existed for many centuries, and this could mean they have had many incarnations. As the companions’ curse of lycanthropy is relatively recent, it is possible the Silver Hand as a group took on that identity because they have a grudge against the companions. They felt the companions lost their way, and that their new group are the true heirs of Ysgramor.

However, the Silver Hand also are pretty diverse in their membership, which would seem to work against this idea. But that isn’t so. It could easily be explained that over the years, their whole identity became defined less by the ideas of Ysgramor and more by being enemies of the companions. In fact, it could be argues that by the time period Skyrim is set in, the original reasons are long forgotten and all the group knows is that the companions are their enemies.

Of course this is only a  theory, but I present this to you all to get your opinion. What do you think?

By Kira Nance On 17 Mar, 2017 At 03:01 PM | Categorized As Animation, Editorials, Featured, Movie News, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarJumping into the world of foreign horror films can be a daunting task. There is always the chance that the message will be lost in translation and odds are you will be halfway through the movie when you realize it’s been stealing not just your time but your soul. To save you the anguish of such an occurrence I recommend the following flicks.

 

Dumplings 2004 (Hong Kong)

This one is definitely not for the squeamish, unless of course the thought of aborted fetuses garnishing your dinner plate gets your gears going. Director Fruit Chan (Tales from the Dark 1, The Midnight After, Made in Hong Kong) serves up the evils of human vanity on a silver platter. Fallen actress Mrs. Li (Miriam Yeung) is desperate to regain the love and affection of her adulterous, cradle robbing husband (Tony Leung Ka Fai) and maintain her status as an elite housewife. To regain her youth, Mrs. Li seeks out former mainland gynecologist Aunt Mei (Bai Ling), who specializes in restorative services through means of rare culinary delights. Mei’s rejuvenating fetus-stuffed dumpling’s fall short of Mrs. Li’s high expectations however and Mei must procure something a little more potent. Just like with a good whiskey, age is everything and when a very pregnant victim of incestual rape shows up on Mei’s doorstep begging for an abortion… well, you can do the math there. Soon after the potent dish is served Mrs. Li begins to suffer some unsavory side effects as her life takes an unexpected turn.

 

Blood Glacier 2013 (Austria)

Practical effects and B-movie charm get the blood flowing in this creepy crawly eco-horror directed by Marvin Kren (ABC’s of Death 2, Rammbock, Schautag). A group of scientists in the Austrian Alps are violently confronted by the next phase in evolution after a glacier emitting a blood like substance begins to mutate the local wildlife. While much of the research team is concerned about the negative impact the discovery of these genetic hybrids may have on their funding, site technician Janek (Gerhard Liebmann) is adamant about the dangers of keeping such a thing secret. Things really get messy when Janek’s former love interest Tanja (Edita Malovcic) enters the scene with Prime Minister and company in tow. Oblivious to the dangers ahead Tanja leads her group right into the hands or mandibles rather of the bloodthirsty hybrids.

 

Baby Blood 1990 (France)

Beautiful show of Kensington Gore as an art medium in this parasitic blood festival by director Alain Robak (Adrenaline, Vertiges). After an “unborn” parasite takes up residence in her uterus, abused and dejected Yanka (Emmanuelle Escourrou) embarks upon a mercilessly bloody journey to return the parasitic creature to the sea. The two quickly come to terms with their symbiosis, although it’s really more of a standoff if you ask me. As the snarky little parasite baby grows, so does Yanka’s taste for murder and she wholeheartedly embraces her new role as victimizer. Through quirky bouts of dialogue, and an intense shared bloodlust the two form a seriously peculiar bond and leave a respectably bloody wake.

No Gravatar

Okay, this time on Games That Should Be Revived, I  am tackling a game from Nintendo/HAL Laboratory that most don’t remember and flew mostly under the radar. I do not think it even got a virtual console release.Arcana, known in Japan as Card Master: Rimsalia no Fuuin, was a card based RPG dungeon crawler released in 1992. It took a lot of influence from the Wizardry games and games like Shining In The Darkness, Dungeon Master and more,. It also had has a detailed story with a unique twist on the gameplay. The game had a look where all the characters and enemies were represented by cards. Cards were also used in combat at times, but they were not the only part of the game.

The game had numerous issues such as pacing and poor use of the combat that it had, as well as an unforgiving difficulty. This is a shame because it had a lot of potential. In addition to the aforementioned influences,  many people I have spoken to about this game have stated that it actually reminded them of Arena, the first game in The Elder Scrolls series. Obviously they are two different styles of RPGs and Arena came out years later on more powerful tech, but people have found some comparisons. They commented that it reminded them of Arena in terms of immersion and atmosphere, if not in actual gameplay. They felt the dame feeling of being drawn in to a great experience, but feel more could have been done with Arcana.

I feel Arcana has a lot of potential to actually be a big series for Nintendo/HAL Laboratory. I do not mean as big as Mario or Zelda, but it could be a very serviceable mid tier series for the publisher. Dungeon Crawler RPGs have seen a big resurgence in recent years, and the game having a unique story and enough of its own identity, with a setup that is entirely its own, Arcana could stand out well among games today. There have been some similar games since, but I would like to see what Nintendo/HAL Laboratory can do with the IP in the modern day,

Obviously there would need to be changes done to it, but the series could be revived as an RPG with a strong dungeon crawler focus but with more emphasis on the overworld as well. Or it could well follow the pattern of Diablo and the Rougelikes but with its own spin on the genre to keep its identity intact. The point I am making is that Arcana was written off far too soon. Nintendo and HAL Laboratory should really consider bringing this game back because it could stand out well for Nintendo today. A title like this would do especially well on the Switch, since the immersion can be had on the go or at home and feel seamless.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 14 Mar, 2017 At 07:29 AM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, PC Games, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarThe Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is coming to Nintendo Switch later this year, but will it do well? It is coming out a year after the special edition released on other consoles and PC and several years after the original game. To succeed on Switch it needs to be different, and I think it will be.

If Skyrim on Switch were just the original version of the game, it would have come early at launch. If it were just the special edition….it would also have been a quick port. The fact that it is coming out so late, makes me feel that more work is being done on this. In fact this might even be a special Nintendo themed edition of the game. But what would that entail. Well, probably exclusive mods that allow Nintendo content. maybe some items, armor and weapons from Nintendo games. Heck maybe some cameos and even a sidequest if we are lucky. The game could also make use of HD rumble to give the shouts more of an impact.

But what can really make a difference is amiibo. Hear me out on this. Imagine scanning an amiibo into the game and getting new items based off that amiibo for the dovahkiin. Scanning one of the many amiibo from Legend of Zelda will bring weapons, armor and more from that series. Maybe even a location or two will make an appearance. Or you could even bring Epona into the game, to replace the horses in Skyrim. The same for a fire emblem amiibo, with it giving you the armor and weapons from that series, and maybe some changes to the dragons. The Mario amiibo could make osmall changes to Parthuunax who is voiced by Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario himself, or we could see some new enemies and more appear, all to give the game a unique feel that has a Nintendo feeling.

Ideally, this would also work with third party amiibo. Imagine using the Mega Man amiibo to get his iconic look and then kill a dragon and take its soul. The music could even change to the turn that plays when Mega Man absorbs a new ability. Using the upcoming Cloud amiibo could give you the buster sword, which could be an over powered sword in the game. Ryu could give the player the Hadouken either as a spell or a new shout, which would be something many fans would like. And let us not forget the Shovel Knight amiibo. This could unlock Shovel Knight’s armor and shovel blade for use in the game. The amiibo could give specific armors depending on gender, but otherwise it could be all uniform.

The best thing about this, is that all these changes would be optional. There would be no need to force these on people who just want the game, but it  would be available if people want, via the amiibo. There should still be something in game without the amiibo, just to be there for people who don’t want the amiibo. But still the main focus should be on the amiibo and their optional use.

This is an idea, I hope Bethesda considers and Nintendo helps make happen. Using amiibo could be the big selling point for Skyrim on Switch.

………………………………………

 

The above was an opinion piece and solely that of the author. It does not necessarily reflect the views of Real Otaku Gamer or that of its staff besides the author.

No Gravatar

Neo Geo games are now available on the Nintendo Switch worldwide and many are enthusiastic to play Metal Slug 3 and King of fighters 98 on the system. But there is another game that is far more noteworthy than those.

Also having come out on the Switch is Waku Waku 7. This is one of the most unusual and off beat fighting games ever made, The characters are parodies of other games, of anime, manga, comics and of movies, both Japanese and western made, such as shotoclones, sword fighters and anime action girls. It is hard to explain but this is one of the most awesome fighting games you can play. Easy to learn but difficult to master, this is just fun to play and enjoy.

The game had a western release in arcades….but not on the home console scene. It only received home console releases in Japan. That is why this release is so notable, this is one of the first times western players will get to play this. And to be honest, this is a game everyone needs to try.

The fighting is great as mentioned earlier, the visuals are excellent and while blurry on Switch, Hamster is patching the Arcade Archive series to fix that. It has that look that games like Street Fighter III and Darkstalkers had ( one character is a parody of a Darkstalkers character in fact), while still being in the SNK style, which still looks amazing today. And the music is absolutely fantastic. It is a great soundtrack for a fighting game and extremely energetic, and really gets you into the fight.

With great characters, a ridiculous yet decent plot that works, and fun gameplay, I cannot understand why this game languished in obscurity for so long. It has now received an arcade perfect port on the Switch and I have had a great time with it. I would love to see a modern sequel that continues the story and adds to the parodies.  As I mentioned earlier, this is a very significant release for the game, and I am hoping it sells well enough that there will be interest for a new game. That would be the best case scenario here. If you have a Nintendo Switch, I implore you to get this game.

See a trailer below to see what kind of game this is!