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By Jonathan Balofsky On 13 May, 2016 At 12:50 AM | Categorized As Featured, PlayStation 3/PlayStation 4, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments
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No GravatarValkyria Chronicles is a game that received much acclaim when it first came out but was still overlooked by many.  Sega has remastered the PS3 classic for the PS4, and now it is available for a new generation of players to enjoy.

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Valkyria Chronicles is many things in one.  It tells a war story in the form of a Strategy RPG, but it isn’t a traditional Strategy RPG.  Unlike others in the genre, when you select a character to move in this game, you actually control them, and how they attack.  This makes Valkyria Chronicles a hybrid between Strategy RPGs and Third Person Shooters (albeit leaning heavily to the Strategy RPG Genre).  It is an interesting set up, and while others have tried it since, none have done it as well as Valkyria Chronicles.

The story is one that tells of wartime conflict, but with humor spliced in at times so you are not overwhelmed.  The steampunk-esque setting really does allow a lot to be done and the characters within are developed well.  In fact, much like a certain other Strategy RPG, this is a game where you will grow attached to all the characters and will want to save them from dying in battle.  Even the minor characters have distinct personalities that make them stand out as individuals.

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The art is done in a sketchbook art style, giving the game a unique look that helps convey its story better than it would have been able to with a  traditional art style. This style comes off as a serious cartoon about major issues.  It gives the game a sense of identity, a sense of difference.  This is a game that is not like others and that is a good thing.

The game may have elements of third person shooters mixed in with its strategy elements, but do not be misled as this is truly a strategy first game. You will have to coordinate your combatants and choose carefully who to bring to battle and who to save for later. The wrong pick of soldiers can lead to a crushing defeat, while a good pick can lead to a faster victory. There is a steep learning curve, much steeper than most Strategy RPGS due to the aforementioned unique combat, but it isn’t audience alienating as some other games can be.

Valkyria Chronicles Remastered runs at 1080p and 60 frames per second, which makes the art style truly stand out and look alive. The remastering includes an expert difficulty and the previous DLC and that is all.  To be honest, given the price this is being sold at, that is a good deal despite some complaints people may have about content. The game also includes Japanese voices and English subtitles and given that at some points, the English voice acting can get extremely annoying, this is a welcome addition. It isn’t that the voice work in English is bad as a whole, but some individual voiceovers are not exactly the best done. And given that there are a lot of cut scenes ( to be expected in an RPG), you might want an alternative.

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Aside from the steep learning curve and the occasionally spotty voice acting, Valkyria Chronicles Remastered is a good package at a good price. The gameplay is solid and the visuals are well done. With solid combat and story, the game has something for everyone. I say that if you are a fan of strategy games and especially Strategy RPGs and have not yet played this game, then you really should check it out. It is an experience that you will not regret.

By Garrett Green On 8 May, 2016 At 12:54 AM | Categorized As Featured, PlayStation 3/PlayStation 4, Reviews, Reviews | With 0 Comments
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No GravatarThe game based on the movie based on the game, Ratchet and Clank for the PS4 is a charming, beautiful, and fun shooting platformer filled with gorgeous environments, fun weapons, and clever writing. Based on the 2002 game of the same name for the PS2, Ratchet and Clank is a reboot built from the ground up. While the story beats are similar, there’s enough different for long time fans to enjoy and a perfect place for newcomers to jump into the fray.

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One of the first things you’ll notice is how gorgeous this game looks. Everything from the characters to the environments to the lighting is simply beautiful and wonderfully detailed. It really is one of the best looking games I’ve seen to date. And that’s when everything is still and calm, when the action ramps up it’s literally an explosion of gorgeousness on screen. The explosions, the particle effects, tons and tons of bolts filling the screen while your enemies explode into bits… Truth be told it can sometimes be overwhelming. It didn’t happen too often but there were a few times that I could not make out what was going on for a second or two. But even with all this filling the screen, I never experienced any type of frame rate drops or stutter.

The story is a familiar one if you played the original Ratchet and Clank, with a few differences and twist. Told by Captain Qwark after the events of the story, he recants how our heroes met, banded together to stop the evil Alonzo Drek and Dr. Nefarious, and went from zeroes to heroes! (Excuse my Disney-ism) The writing and humor here are top notch and the characters are charming with a lot of heart. There are a few pacing issues with some of the cutscenes but it’s a very minor nitpick.

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But what truly matters in a game… is the gameplay, and it’s great. There are very few platformers out there anymore, but Insomnia reminds us that there is a place for a well done platformer in today’s gaming world. Jumping and shooting feel great, tether swings, jet backs, and grind boots all feel tight and fun. Insomnia really put love and care into their long time mascot. Another mechanic they’ve always been great at is coming up with wacky and fun guns. The variety is good, however old time fans will only see a few “new” guns with the rest being returns from the first game. Each gun gains levels simply by using them more and upgrades can be unlocked, rewarding the player for their play style.

All that being said, there are a few small disappointments this game has. There are a few levels where you pilot your space shape and they are all sort of “meh.” Not great, not bad, just sort of middle of the road. The controls for flying your ship aren’t as tight as the rest of the game. Also, once you finish a level and clear it out, it tends to stay that way. Only very few enemies respond once you clear out a level, making revisiting them to level up your guns hard and simply boring. However the counter to that is the game’s challenge mode, which is pretty much a new game plus mode. Not only do you keep all your guns, though not your equipment since they are all mostly tied into the story, but your guns gain the ability to level up further and become more powerful.

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All in all, it’s a great game. The action, the story, the characters are all fun and worth a play through. Whether you are a long time fan of the series or a newbie looking to jump into this universe, Ratchet and Clank is a game worth buying. And it’s only $40, it’s a full fledged game that has more gameplay than some $60 games out there for only $40. If you have a PS4, do yourself a favor and get this game.

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No GravatarAs some of you might know, Mass Effect is one of my favorite gaming franchises.  Of course, when I say that, I am looking at the franchise as  a whole (I will not dwell on what happened to ME 3).  However, for those gamers who primarily play on PlayStation consoles, playing the original Mass Effect was not in the cards.  This changed once the game was finally released for PlayStation 3 at the end of 2012.  Finally, PlayStation fans were able to play the whole series through.  I  was one of those fans who got the original for digital download.  Here is what I thought:

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Mass Effect is a science fiction third-person RPG developed by Bioware and published by Microsoft originally, but is now being published by EA.  It originally was released for XBox 360 only, but eventually was released for PC and then Playstation 3.  It uses the Unreal 3 engine.  The game was applauded for its in-depth universe.  To me, the game is the Holy Grail of RPGs, since most do not have the Science fiction twist that Mass Effect does.

The setting puts the game far into the future where the human race discovers alien technology that allows them to travel faster than light (the “mass effect” field).  They have also found mass relays that allow them to travel significant distances in space in short amounts of time.  The human race expands throughout the galaxy, meeting other alien races.  They create the Human Systems Alliance that becomes a rising power among the other, older races.

The game follows Commander Shepard, an elite soldier who is picked to head a secret mission on a experimental ship, the SSV Normandy.  He is also in the running to become the first human Spectre, a black-ops division of the Citadel counsel, a governing body of the “civilized” parts of the galaxy.  As the story continues, the player begins to delve into the richly-designed universe that is Mass Effect and discovers that there are some very sinister things lurking in the galaxy.

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One of the fun things about this game is the ability of the player to go where they want to go in the galaxy.  Sure, there are some parts that you don’t get to decide, but there is a lot of freedom in traveling, allowing the player to go to some really cool planets.  Another interesting aspect (that I’m sure you may have heard about) is the ability to have Commander Shepard have a relationship with some of the characters.  You only get a few options in this game, but it still keeps things kind of interesting.

There’s a lot going on in Mass Effect.  It’s an RPG with XP, leveling up, and different skill-sets you can go through.  However, it is also a third-person action adventure shooter.  It employs a duck and cover system of fighting but also incorporates vehicle battle as well.  It SHOULD be a very diverse game play.  For the main missions, that is correct; the actual main quests are a ton of fun.  It’s the side quests that are a complete bear to play.  They are tedious and difficult in some spots, something that I wasn’t used to from playing Mass Effect 2 and 3 originally.  Because of this, I will have to knock the game play down quite a bit.

There are other aspects of the game play that I would like to cover, however.  The first being the class system.  Players get to choose at the beginning the type of class they want their character to be.  This also includes being able to fully customize the Shepard character: male or female, default or customize completely.  I recommend being on male default because Shepard is sexy.  Besides customizing the character in that way, there are six classes to choose from: Soldier, Engineer, Adept, Infiltrator, Sentinel, and Vanguard.  Each class has its own special perks.  I typically play as soldier.  Each of the classes also have their own special combat abilities.

Another interesting aspect of game play is dialogue and morality system.  As the story unfolds, the player is given options for dialogue.  One is typically the “good” option.  Another is the “neutral” option.  And the third is the “bad” option.  Depending on how good or bad you want Shepard to be will depend on how you answer.  However, sticking with one side opens up special dialogue conversations not available otherwise.

This particular Mass Effect game focuses very heavily on upgrading weapons.  The player can upgrade pistols, shotguns, assault rifles, sniper rifles, as well as grenades and armor.  Mods to weapons and armor can also be found as well.  Upgrades are collected while exploring and in battle when an enemy is killed, but it can be a pain keep track of all of them.  Many times, I would have to stop game play because I had accumulated too many upgrades and had to either apply them or convert them into omni-gel (an all-purpose tool that helps with everything for fixing damage on vehicles to hacking locks).  This did get a bit annoying at times.

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For the time that the game came out, the graphics were pretty darned slick.  And not only that, but the game has actually aged well.  It is still playable without the graphics seeming to be annoying.  They certainly do not cause me headaches like Final Fantasy VII, for instance.  The in-game graphics are great, but the cut-scenes are really were the money is.

Unfortunately, even though the main parts of the game are a lot of fun, all of the side quests are a pain.  They are such a pain that I almost stopped playing the game.  They are tedious and repetitive.  Technically, I would give the fun-factor of the main game a 10, but I would give the side quests a 1.  Also because of this, I will probably not be revisiting the game, despite the awesome storyline.

As a whole, this game is great.  It’s got some issues; however, if the player just focuses on the main mission, the game is a lot of fun to play.  I’m also a bit picky because I feel Mass Effect 2 is a much better game overall.  Then again, considering that you can get the whole trilogy pretty cheaply and just the original even more cheaply, it’s definitely worth your time.

 

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No GravatarBioShock is a first-person shooter released in 2007 for XBox 360 and PC. It was later ported for PS3 in 2008.  It was developed by Irrational Games (they were calling themselves 2K Boston back in the day) and published by 2K.  The game uses a modified version of the Unreal engine with Havok for the physics side.  It was highly praised for its story, setting, and thematic elements.  It later spawned two sequels: BioShock 2 and BioShock Infinite.

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As the player, you take on the character of Jack, a man who survives a plane crash into the middle of the ocean.  Upon swimming to safety, you find a lighthouse.  However, this is more than meets the eye.  After getting into a device called a bathysphere, a type of submersible, you are transported underneath the ocean and are introduced to Rapture, a huge underwater city.

However, there is something completely wrong with Rapture.  Upon arrival, you discover that the once utopian city is now in a state of disarray with roaming “splicers,” creepy little girls called “Little Sisters,” and huge robotic bosses called “Big Daddies.”  I don’t want to get into the story too much because I don’t want to spoil anything for you, but I will tell you that the story is top-notch.  To me, the best part of BioShock is the setting.  I could just walk around in Rapture all day and be as happy as can be.  I know it’s a really creepy place, but it’s also a really interesting place, especially since you have to dig around a bit to figure out what went wrong.  I loved that the game was kind of scary, but not so scary that I wanted to stop playing it.

One of the other great things about the story of BioShock was a lot of really good and really interesting thematic elements of the game.  Rapture’s creator, Andrew Ryan, designed the city to be free of government and free of religion (a nod to Ayn Rand’s Objectivism).  However, without some constraint of morality, the city quickly crumbles into chaos after some bio-engineering and experimentation gone really wrong.  It’s a really interesting and engrossing game.  It’s one of my favorite video game stories of all time.

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BioShock is first and foremost a first-person shooter.  It’s a rather good one at that, especially for the time that it came out.  As an FPS, it plays smoothly and adds some interesting game play elements.  It has a typical style of ever-increasingly fun weapons to play with, but it also adds the “bio” element to it by creating the use of plasmids (a type of genetic alteration involving needles–I told you the game is a bit creepy).  With your left hand, you control your plasmids, which can vary from shooting fire, ice, and even bees out of your fingertips.  With your right hand, you control your primary weapon.  This is a really, really fun combination, and it makes for  some interesting game play.  However, it gets annoying switching back and forth between shooting plasmids and shooting your weapon, since you can only have one or the other at a time.  This glaring issue was later fixed in BioShock 2.

Besides the use of plasmids, the game play also adds some role-playing and stealth elements as well.  The player has options for stealth around security, including cameras and auto-turrets.  Collecting money in the game gives the player options for upgrading weapons, buying new plasmids, or gaining additional ammo or health.  You may also collect gene tonics that give you special abilities.  One of the more annoying parts of the game was the ability to hack certain things like cameras and vending machines.  Although this sounds like a great idea, to hack something, you get pushed into this mini-game, similar to Pipe Dream.  The first ten or so times you do it isn’t bad, but it gets annoying after twenty, thirty, or forty times.

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One of the unique game play aspects of BioShock is fairly original concept of “roaming boss battles.”  In order to gain more power, the player must take on Big Daddies in order to get to the Little Sisters.  There are a set amount of Big Daddies in each level that will appear in various places (but sometimes can feel like at random).

The graphics were very good for the time that it came out.  It has still held up well for an older game.  In fact, it has held up much better than games like Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and even the original Infamous.  Even going back and playing it now, I don’t get headaches from playing a game with crazy old graphics.

One really enjoyable thing about the graphics (and the setting) is how it highlights the amazing Art Deco designs of Rapture.  This is one of the reasons why I will actually play the game just to wander around and explore (I can’t say that for many other games).

I don’t care if the game play is perfect.  I don’t care if the graphics are perfect.  BioShock will always be one of my most favorite games of all time.  It is probably my favorite first-person shooter.  This game is just plain fun.  It has been the most fun that I have had in a game in a long, long time.  It is the reason why I have been so backlogged on so many games: I keep wanting to play this game over and over again.  BioShock made me expect more out of my first-person shooters.  It is a complete must-play, trust me.

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Resistance 2 may now seem like a small blip in the world of gaming after so many years, especially since Insomniac pretty much killed the Resistance franchise with the third installment.  However, for those who played Resistance 2, it was a game to be remembered.  It was a follow-up for Resistance: Fall of Man, and everything about it was just right.  Published in late 2008 by Sony, it became one of my favorite first person shooters ever.  Here is why Resistance 2 was one of the best games ever:

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Story Mode

The Resistance franchise is based off of the premise that before Hitler could begin taking over Europe in the 1930s and ’40s, a group of aliens known as the Chimera did instead.  So instead of sending American troops to fight Hitler, the United States sent troops to help the Europeans battled the Chimera.  An American soldier, Nathan Hale, accidentally is infected by the Chimera virus and becomes a complete bad ass.  That’s basically the plot of the original.  In R2, the Chimera have pretty much taken Europe, and it is a last-ditch effort to try to keep them from completely stomping all over the United States.  Nathan Hale is recruited again to help fight the Chimera in a squad called the The Sentinels, a group of other soldiers infected with the same virus.  The story follows Nathan as he tries to push back the Chimera in America.

Now doesn’t that sound like fun?

It really was, too.  Despite being a bit linear in game play, the game was enjoyable as a stand-alone.  I will admit that, like many first person shooter games, the story mode is not that long.  I would complain about that, except for the fact that it has BOTH cooperative and competitive (just read on to see what I’m talking about).

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Cooperative

A good cooperative mode on a first person shooter is like the holy grail of game elements to me.  Cooperative forces people to have FUN and work as a TEAM instead of being jerks.  R2 created a class-based system for the cooperative that had amazing balance.  Classes included: Solider, Spec-Op, and Medic.  Each one had its own purpose.  The tank had the heavy weaponry.  The Spec-Op did the long distance and sniping dirty work.  The Medic supported and healed the team.  That’s perfection right there.  The cooperative mode could range from two to eight people and allowed people to work as the Spectre Team, a group trying to flush out the Chimera.  There were multiple, large maps that rotated the starting point, which made the maps feel more new and interesting, even if you played them a ton (like I did).  Sadly, Insomniac never offered map upgrades (shame on them), but I still enjoyed the cooperative so much that I didn’t care.

To me, cooperative is the best way to do online.  Aren’t games supposed to be FUN?  Why do I need to get worked up over playing a game?   Yes, in R2 you did get a score with how many points you got during the match, and it WAS fun to see if you could beat out your teammates, but at the end of the day, everyone has to work together for a goal.  There were parts that even when you were high-level, if the team wasn’t gelling, it was over.  Plus, when you aren’t worried about shooting other players (as opposed to killing NPCs), you learn to relax and enjoy the game.  The amount of inside jokes and craziness that ensued makes me always think fondly of R2.

Sigh.  Those were the days!

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Competitive

Just when you think the awesomeness of R2 could go no further–just wait–there is more!  R2 also has a competitive mode for people who are, well, competitive.  This type of game play has never been my cup of tea, but I did enjoy it on R2.  It was basically Chimera versus humans, but the cool thing was that you could select the size of the match.  You could have a small deathmatch, or you could have up to sixty players in a match.  Let me tell you, that could get crazy quickly.  Crazy fun, I mean. Apparently, for the time that it came out, it was the most that the PS3 had every hosted.  The whole feel of it was much different from a Call of Duty game.  It was much faster paced with the extra people, and although it was my least favorite part of the game, I still played because it was kind of fun.

So that’s Resistance 2.  A perfect mix of story mode, cooperative, and competitive.  I’m not saying that was a perfect game.  It has its flaws, but I just can’t seem to understand why no one else has decided to use this type of gaming structure for their first person shooter.  Maybe one day it will happen…

***Caution: Just because I love RI and R2 does NOT mean I recommend Resistance 3.  That game was a complete mess, and I like to pretend it never happened.***

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Paranautical Activity is a rather infamous game for reasons known to many in the PC Gaming community. But beyond the infamy, I needed to ask, is it actually a good game?

PA is a first person shooter that uses randomly generated levels similar to rougelike games. Its a neat take and the gameplay itself is rather interesting. The FPS elements take inspiration from games like Quake but can be done fast paced or slow paced and the controls are very intuitive, at least as far as I played. The graphics feel like an HD version of a mid 90’s PC first person shooter, if that makes sense, and actually look really good on a big screen TV.  The enemies, while not the most diverse, are serviceable but the bosses leave a lot to be desired. I don’t know what it was, but it just felt like the bosses were lacking for some reason. It felt like they could have been done a lot better.

The game did not have any frame drops that I noticed, or any screen tearing, but the audio was no the best. I felt the soundtrack just didn’t fit the game properly and that was a bit distracting.

But now the question is, is the game fun? Yes and no is the answer. The game fills a niche, of both classic FPS games and games that are similar to rougelikes, while many will be turned off by it. The truth is, it took me several days to get any idea of what I felt about the game and I’m still unsure really. I do like what I played and did enjoy it at times, but other times it just felt flat. However,  the times I did enjoy it, I enjoyed it a great deal and thus I’m unsure what to say now. I think this game is worth checking out and give it a slight recommendation, but be warned that it might not be for you. This game definitely is not lacking for content though and there won’t be boredom here,

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No GravatarUncharted: Drake’s Fortune is the start to an amazing series.  I unfortunately played the games out of order (started with Uncharted 3).  I ended up buying the Uncharted/Uncharted 2 dual pack and really thought I got my money’s worth from both games.  Despite having some age, Uncharted is a blast to play.

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Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune is a third-person shooter, action-adventure game that came out on the PlayStation 3 in 2007.  It was developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony.  Overall, it sold very well, and got critical acclaim, spawning two sequels.  Although when I originally heard about it, I thought it was going to be a Tomb Raider rip-off, so I ignored it completely until now.  This is not the case at all, and I wish I would have known that back in 2007.  This game is a ton of fun and does not play like a Tomb Raider game at all in game play, story, and tone.  If anything, it’s more Indiana Jones-like than Lara Croft.  The game was re-released as part of the Uncharted Collection in 2015 with slicker-looking graphics and more power.

In this game, we are introduced to Nathan Drake, treasure-hunter, Victor Sullivan, his mentor, and Elena Fisher, a journalist hired to record his adventures.  Nate is searching for Sir Francis Drake’s secret, which leads him on a quest for El Dorado.  Adventuring ensues with Elena provided as a love-interest for Drake.  Overall, it’s a fun story, but I felt the pacing was a little slower than Drake’s Deception.  I also was a little annoyed at the fact that the scenery was very similar: jungle/ruins.  That made the game feel a little dull, especially compared to Drake’s Deception, where you get to go to so many cool places.

The game is a typical third person shooter, duck and cover with the added elements of jumping and climbing.  Being the first of the series, it is definitely not as polished as the later games.  One thing that bugged me was the constant gun battles that lasted way too long and came up too often.  I felt like there wasn’t a very good balance between the adventuring portion and the action portion.  There were also some spots that drove me absolutely crazy and actually made me want to stop playing (I’ll get to that in a bit).  This is how I would classify each part of the game play:

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1.) Adventuring/Puzzles

To me, the fun part of the game is the adventuring, and even though I don’t particularly like puzzle games, I actually kind of enjoyed the ones in this game.  I could figure out most of the puzzles by myself, and the rest I easily found how to do on YouTube (what did we do before YouTube, right?).  The jumping, leaping, and climbing is pretty easy to get the hang of, although it was a lot more polished in the later games.  I actually wish there was more exploring and jumping puzzles.  I felt that it was a little lacking, especially for a Tomb Raider fan like myself.

2.) Fighting

This was the part that really annoyed me.  I thought there was way too many gun fights for an adventure game.  It felt like every time you turned the corner there was another gun fight.  It actually became very predictable after awhile and took away from the game a bit.  This aspect was much improved in later Uncharted games, but it still unfortunately took a little away from the game.

3.) Vehicles

Throughout the game, you will ride on different vehicles, including Jeeps and jet-skis.  To me, this was one of the more fun points of the game.  In the Jeep, Elena is driving and Nate is shooting.  With the jet ski, you are driving as Nate but also must shoot with Elena.  It was a fun change from the massive amounts of gun fights that consumed the game play.

For the time that the game came out, the graphics were pretty good.  Obviously now, they are a little dated.  However, I could stand the graphics, and they didn’t give me a headache from Final Fantasy VII syndrome.  By the way, Final Fantasy VII syndrome is a term my husband and I have coined to describe how older games with funky graphics give us headaches when we play because of the eye strain.

Here’s the problem with this game: It reminds me of how I felt about the original Mass Effect.  Now don’t get me wrong, except for the cover-shoot and third person game play, they are worlds different.  But because I had to wait to play the original Mass Effect since I typically play on PC or PlayStation, I had already played the second and third game.  Playing the original became tedious and unpleasant because I knew how much better the later games were.  I don’t see this as a complete knock to Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune.  With all gaming franchises, there are improvements that come along the way.  Luckily, this is a franchise that keeps on improving.

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Imprisoned on the Infinity, the largest space ship ever built by mankind, you are set free by a mysterious woman who has taken it upon herself to guide you on your escape for unknown reasons. As you make your way deeper and deeper into the ship, you’ll slowly learn more about the Infinity’s purpose and where you fit in amongst all the chaos. It is a different approach in the Runner genre since most games are mainy focused on the high scores. Plus you are a werewolf running in space, so enough said.

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Infinity Runner’s greatest strength is how unique it is, with a sci-fi story that plays out like a movie. You awaken on a ship, naked and confused, with the voice of a woman telling you to run. And run you must, because everything is trying to kill you. You will soon learn more about your character, the ship, and your strange ability to turn into a werewolf as you go. The game plays like any endless runner would: your character never stops moving. You are restricted primarily to close corridors, and have to make split-second decisions. Most of these decisions involve things like turning before running into a wall, and attacking enemies. Attacking enemies is simple enough; a button prompt appears on screen and you have to press them before a brief timer runs out. These are more deviations than the main gameplay, but they blend in well with the experience. Another important aspect of the gameplay are the “action” sequences. These are usually “Hollywood” style action scenes that once again require quick reflexes. These also help break up the narrow corridor running, and although some scenes get repetitive, it is not something particularly game breaking. Graphically the game looks great. the corridors of the ship and all the elements create a great atmosphere which sets up Infinity Runner as something else among runners.The music also plays an important role, with having a good soundtrack and the voices are acceptable for this.

Bottom Line Infinity Runner is a good endless runner. It does something different with the way it tells its story, has some collectibles to unlock, and the sci-fi vibe creates something different. If you are a fan of the genre, or are into sci-fi stories this is for you, the gameplay is solid and can be fun playing it.

 

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Sometimes there is a game that you expect to be a decent game. You think it will be good for a while and like it and move on. When you finally play that game however, you are shocked how well it triggers nostalgia for classic games in you, while simultaneously amazing you with new ideas.  Chronicles of Teddy: Harmony of Exidus is one of those major surprises, and one I am happy to have found.

The game almost immediately made me think of classics such as Zelda 2 ( my all time favourite NES game and favourite Zelda game) and it did that in a good way. It brought the classic feel back but in a way that felt fresh and new to me. The pixel art was nothing short of amazing and the game is one of the most breathtaking I have seen ever seen done in that style.

 

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The gameplay is simple yet complex but more importantly, it does not hold your hand at all. The game lets you learn as you go and you will find yourself constantly finding new things to do. The game gives you a ton of questions, and it is up to you to find the answers. The best part about that? You will have an awesome time doing that. The game is hard but not insanely frustrating. The challenge is the exact right level and is perfectly balanced for both veterans of gaming and new gamers wanting to try this kind of game for the first time.

I often here that games that trigger nostalgia in the player are a bad thing, but I have to disagree. Chronicles of Teddy: Harmony of Exidus triggers nostalgia, at least for me, but it adds its own way of doing things, such as a system where you have to collect runes to communicate with NPCs and handling combat in an interesting way. The items you will get, are fun to use and really make the experience better. This type of game may trigger nostalgia in you, but its what the game itself has to offer you that you will remember the most.

I have to recommend this game and give it my highest approval!

 

 

shantae

No Gravatarshantae

 

 

Shantae is one of those series that just gets better all the time. The first Shantae on the GBC was one of the most innovative games on that platform. It did a metroidvania style of gameplay that was almost hard to believe, and had great characterization and a day and night system.

Shantae Risky’s Revenge Director’s Cut is the follow up to the GBC classic and the predecessor to Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse. How does the game work in comparison to its prequel and sequel?

Shantae Risky’s Revenge DC is an absolute blast to play, with movement so precise, that there is no way to blame poor controls when you mess up. The levels are awesome to explore and the enemies fun to fight. The enemies themselves come in diverse groups and are a major highpoint of the game as with all entries in the series.

Risky’s Revenge DC is not as big or innovative as Shantae and the Pirate’s curse which came after it, but it is still very much worth getting. Shantae and her cast of characters have real fleshed out personalities and it feels great to interact with everyone. The game can be very suggestive at times which might be awkward for younger players but it really shouldn’t pose a problem for parents.

The game is gorgeous and runs well and you will really appreciate just how beautiful it is, only when you start to play it. The music is also fantastic and I have not heard such great music since the last Shantae game I played. The sounds perfectly convey each scene and set the mood and ambience.

If you like metroidvania games, then you need to get this game. No ifs, ands, or buts. I cannot recommend this game enough. I played for a week to make sure I would not get tired of it, and if anything I found myself loving it more. Get it now!

 

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