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Amongst the myriad of pick-up-and-play games on mobile platforms, it’s hard to stand out these days.  Virtually every genre is utterly swamped with games, especially indie releases.  And no genre is more stuffed to overflowing than the physics-based genre, primarily owing to the success of games like Angry Birds.  In a content-rich environment such as this one, it’s hard to stand out.  But what better way to do so than with Cthulhu?

Lunarsea (ah, the double entendre!) is a free physics based game on iOS and Android where you play as the great lord Cthulhu himself, who decided to steal the moon.  Doing so has angered the puny human population though, so oddly enough, Cthulhu is fleeing their wrath with a hastily muttered “wgah’nagl bug.”  Unfortunately for our poor angry Elder God, the only getaway vehicle he could locate was an ancient wooden sailing vessel, so he tosses the moon in his pocket, hops aboard, and makes good his escape.

Okay, perhaps a little suspension of disbelief might be required.  The story is short and endearingly odd, but how is the gameplay?  Well, it’s very straightforward.  The moon affects ocean levels, and well, you have it, so you can tap the screen to release it anywhere in the air to raise and lower the waves, as well as to block missile attacks from those filthy humans that just won’t leave you alone.  In addition, there are left and right buttons to move your vessel across the screen to prepare for obstacles, which are frequent and appear rapidly.  The lunar gameplay makes Lunarsea unique and interesting, as the combination of waves and gravity make for a remarkably organic combination.  Timing is everything in this game as you are raising and lowering the waves to get over sharp mountains, dodge missiles, and collect coins and health.

Yes, Cthulhu needs money.  That’s probably on a sign being held by a vagrant trying to wash a windshield somewhere, and if it isn’t, it should be.  In this case, coins buy much-needed upgrades to your skills, such as health, boat speed, and invulnerability length.  And you will need them.  The difficulty curve in Lunarsea ramps up fast.  By level  5, you’ll be swearing at your phone and getting frustrated as those pesky humans manage to fire torpedoes, regular missiles, and even laser-guided missiles at your creaky old vessel.

Fortunately, Live In the Game thought ahead on this one.  Frequent deaths don’t lose all the coins you’ve collected.  It would be nice if you saw a running tally of those as you played, but each time you die, and die you will, your updated bankroll appears and you’re able to buy upgrades.  In addition, there are goals as well, such as blowing up ten missiles or traveling a thousand meters.  The completion of each goal earns you additional bonus coins, allowing you to buy even more upgrades so that eventually, even those of us unskilled at physics games can still manage to move forward at an ungainly crawl.  Many of the goals are also cumulative between games just like coins, giving you the chance to complete them, as you are unlikely to in a single game.

 

There are a couple of sticking points in Lunarsea though.  The list of active goals you are trying to achieve scrolls down from the top of the screen every single time you die.  After you raise the goal cap, this actually intrudes on the gameplay itself, distracting you at the beginning of each level and constantly reminding you that you’re failing to complete them.   The challenge of the game itself can be daunting at times as well and may lead to frustration for the more casual player.  And the jaunty nautical music that seemed novel and enjoyable at first (controllable with a slider, thankfully) can become quickly repetitive as there is only the one song that repeats ad nauseam on every level.

As a minimalist game, however, even after an hour, your phone is unlikely to heat up significantly.  Lunarsea is definitely not a resource hog on Android, which is a plus in these days where you can literally watch your battery life drain away like a swirling toilet flush while you game.   There’s also an Endless Mode to just relax and play if the stages are frustrating you.  It’s still hard, but it’s definitely fun too.   The install on Google Play warns of in-app purchases and ads, but neither were to be seen for this review of the current build of the game.  Overall, Live In The Game has created a clever little game that’s fun to play in small doses when you have a few spare moments.  I mean really, how can you go wrong with a free-to-play game that combines H.P. Lovecraft, Baby Driver, Despicable Me, and Pirates of the Caribbean?  You can’t, and don’t try to say that you can!  Go and give it a try if you enjoy physics games and a challenge, or ever wanted to just… steal the moon!

Download Lunarsea free for Android here.

Download Lunarsea free for iOS here.

This review covers the Android version of Lunarsea by Live In The Game.

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Fire Emblem is one of the greatest tactical strategy games of all times. With this amazing game as the source, coupled with the fun and energetic warriors style gameplay, something amazing is born. The warriors games are known for having huge lists of characters with different powers, taking on all sorts of enemies. This game is no exception and the Fire Emblem characters really do shine. In what looks to be an example of what Fire Emblem will look like in a main series game in the future Fire Emblem warriors really does shine.

This game is one that you can get into for as long as you like. There is always something to do in it, like in all other warriors games. This game is just about busting at the seams with content and that is a good thing. You will probably never find an end to the fun, unless you really are a completionist, because these games are just like that. This game is so fun because if you have a limited time all you have to do is find a short mission and you’ll feel like you spent your time wisely!

This game has a robust story mode, that is longer than the Hyrule Warriors Story mode. With voice acting, this game surpasses that by really letting you watch a story unfold. The story itself is similar to Hyrule Warriors, because heroes from different universes are all falling into the one the main characters live in. This is actually a good thing as it provides a solid base for why the events are occuring in the first place. While it might seem odd, these characters could float between any of the games and probably find a home anyway.

This game has characters from many different Fire Emblem games, from Fates, to Shadow Dragon, Awakening, and even Gaiden. These characters all come with their own storied paths which fit in part into the story mode. With the way the story ends though you have to wonder what happened to them when they returned. Along with all of the characters people know and love, there are also a few new characters. Rowan and Lianna are twins heirs to the throne of Aytolis. Rowan is a brash upstart who at first seemed way to cocky for his own good, while Lianna is a voice of reason. They both aren’t too keen on becoming King or Queen of Aytolis, but they know they will most likely have too. There is also Darios who is there childhood friend, but something about him may not be so good.

All the characters play as you would expect them to play. Characters like Marth, Chrom, and Lyn are fast as they simply wield swords. Robin is a bit slower as he has to ready his spells, along with Elise and Leo. Camilla and Cordelia both fly so they also take a little longer but can bust up foes. Frederick is a tank as usual and his horse can mow down enemies just by charging through them. It all takes a little adjusting to figure out what type of characters you will play as. Though, you will probably just end up picking your favorites and will learn how to control them. This is certainly par for the course for this series, as the series itself is quite fanservicey in that regard.

There is also a History mode which is comparable to Adventure mode from Hyrule Warriors. In this mode you get to relive historic battles from the series. There are missions to complete and heroes to unlock like, Lyn, Celica, Female Robin, and Male Corrin. This mode is cool because it shows off what happened in these games while giving you more game to play. All of the missions have different directives and it is interesting seeing how things change. As you progress through the missions the battle field changes and different routes pop up changing the history. It is all very interesting to see things go differently.

Being a Fire Emblem game there is also a decent tactical side to the game. While you are playing you can adjust your characters locations to give you the edge. You can also order them to different locations midbattle so they complete objectives. They will devastate enemies as you do, and that is always a good thing. Traveling on foot isn’t always going to cut it and you will need to have a good assortment of weapon types to really get the job done.

As it is a Fire Emblem game there is also Pairing up. You can pair up units to devastate opponents with a combo attack if both of their gauges are full. They will also aid each other in battle which is the norm. The other cool thing is that when the relationship is maxed between certain characters, a scene will be shown. This is fun because most of them are between characters who would never normally meet. This leads to fun encounters that really need to be seen to be believed.

The game itself also has a robust achievement system which is great for adding play time, a good collection of things to collect, and a great soundtrack. The music is great because depending on the stage you can hear remixes of classic songs from the series. It is always cool to see what remixes the creators come up with. You never know when  you will hear a riff from one of the past games and that is wonderful.

Fire Emblem warriors is a fantastic game and one that is surely not to be missed. If you like either series you should do yourself a favor and at least try out this game. There is so much to do, and so much game to play. Plus, with DLC coming out including 9 new characters, 9 history maps, new costumes, and new support conversations this game could last till the end of time. So do yourself a solid, and engage in some exhilarating Fire Emblem Warriors Combat today!

 

 

By Stark Wyvern On 20 Oct, 2017 At 01:00 AM | Categorized As Featured, Nintendo 3DS, Reviews | With 0 Comments

No GravatarIn a game series that was once held to be a great one, Mario and Luigi Superstar Saga has now been re-released for the 3DS. The Mario and Luigi series is still an amazing series even though after the trilogy and Dream Team, the game has lessened in quality. Mario and Luigi Superstar Saga’s remake is certainly a beautiful one. There is so much effort put into making this game better than it ever was before. It is remarkable what a new team can do, with new tools to make a game better.

This remake is something that shows all games can be made great again if elbow grease is put into making it fresh. While it still holds all of the greatness from its Gameboy Advance version it is so polished now. The characters seem all the more vivid, and the story all the better. The combat flows like it always did, and you want to continue playing.

Superstar Saga introduces us to a whole new area to explore in the Bean Bean Kingdom. With a wicked foe stealing Peach’s voice, of course, the Mario Bros are off to save the day. It is interesting seeing them play as an RPG, especially when you remember back to the first time this game was released. It was such a revolutionary game to play back then, and it still is so charming.

It is still fun unleashing Bros Attacks, and now with some quality of life touches, it will make it easier for new players to enjoy. You can try out the moves before unleashing them, and that is also helpful. This game just wants you to enjoy it, and allowing you to save anywhere is also a help. 

This game is just as great as it was all those years ago, and if you haven’t played I highly suggest you do. With zany characters, and a new playstyle for Mario and Luigi, it is certainly one new fans of the series will also enjoy. The battles are fun, and you feel good, playing the game, and destroying enemies with your button presses.

There is also a brand new mode which I think is a lot of fun. It’s Bowser’s Minions Mode. This new mode has you controlling a goomba who may not have all his ducks in a row. But, this lucky goomba is going to lead an army to find his hero and leader Bowser. It’s funny seeing a Goomba as the main character as obviously Goomba’s are never seen as the hero. 

This game is a different style than the main game, as it has its own playstyle. In this game, you adjust your army of Bowser’s Minions and send them out. The team with at least one minion alive at the end wins. There are different enemy types that will change the game based on how they attack. There is a triangle, so ranged beats aerial, and aerial beats the ones on the ground, etc. It is really a fun little game, that runs alongside the main game and that is a cool thing. Will this little Goomba save the day, its all up to you in Bowser’s Minions!

Mario and Luigi Superstar Saga+ Bowser’s Minions is a game that anyone who is a Mario fan should find enjoyment in playing. This game was really recreated with such love, and detail that it really makes for a great experience.  I’m sure the plan is to recreate the other two following games Partners in Time and Bowser’s Inside Story and have the trilogy up to the snuff of the later games.

Mario and Luigi Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions is out now on the 3DS Family of Systems. Head out there and rescue Peach, and if you want to Bowser, as you enjoy a classic Mario game alongside something brand new!

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The console wars are something we have heard for so many years now, but no one can bring a console war like Idea Factory. Now we have among us another game set in an alternate story from the rest of the games in the series like MegaTagmension Blanc + Noire. Most of the cast is present but they don’t know each other, and they have different roles to fulfill as the game progresses, in this game Idea Factory is the main character and always an adventurer.

The Game starts off with a cutscene of Idea Factory ridding her bike avoiding obstacles (and being really cool if I may add) and you see the Goddesses engaging in battle, after that you notice that Gameindustri has transformed into a post-apocalyptic wasteland, while it isn’t explained how exactly that happened, it is clearly a war has destroyed the once beautiful scenery. While I.F. is searching for an ancient library said to contain every piece of the world’s history, she sees what first appears to be a shooting star but is in fact a person falling from the sky. When they found the library, they are greeted by the library’s guardian Histoire, while investigating the library I.F. gets wrapped up in a case where all of the world’s history has been stolen so she must travel through time in order to repair it, and her bike after some mods are used to travel trough time (super cool, kind of a chrono trigger situation).

The game’s mission-based structure is different than what fans are used to. Histoire is once again throwing tasks your way. However, next to each mission is a countdown. As you clear other missions, the timer will start to countdown. If the timer reaches zero, the mission will disappear completely. Each mission holds a level of importance in context to its effect on history on thus the type of ending one will receive. Combat closely resembles previous entries in the series. You move the party member around a set area, then proceed to attack, use a skill, or consume an item. There are also gems scattered around the field that you have to jump up to collect, such as health recovery items, which can be very useful when cornered in a boss fight. By landing hits on an enemy as a party, a Fever Gauge will fill up. Once it’s full, a Rainbow Gem will appear that activates Fever Time (in place of the EX Gauge). This causes the entire party’s stats to increase by 10% and stop enemies from getting a turn. EXE Drives (special attacks) can also be used. Once a turn is over, the amount of Active Gauge used will deplete from the Fever Gauge until it’s depleted, ending Fever Time. I.F. even has her own HDD Form with her “Flame Awakening” state which causes her stats to increase dramatically. All of these mechanics help make battles more dynamic, and for me made the combat to be more enjoyable.

The series good humor and jokes continue are still staple in the series, and one thing that I like is that they don’t take themselves to seriously (see the above image). While fans of the series will find some recycled assets and sounds, the combat and the different challenges in each stage make the replay value higher than your average game. Bottom line SuperDimension Neptune Vs Sega Hard Girls is a fun game, with tons of references to scratch that nostalgic itch and the gameplay is more than satisfactory to help it stand up as its own entry.

By Stark Wyvern On 5 Oct, 2017 At 05:03 PM | Categorized As Featured, NINTENDO, Nintendo 3DS, Portable/Mobile Gaming, Reviews, Reviews | With 0 Comments

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Yokai Watch 2 was an awesome game and of course, following the Pokemon model, it is time for Yokai Watch’s first third game. In Psychic Specters, you, play the same game mostly, but there are little moments here and there that are different. It is really still just such a solid game, and one that will hold fans attention until Yokai Watch 3 and Yokai Watch Busters finally come westward.

Yokai Watch 2 Psychic Specters is certainly just as fun even if you have played the game before. The world is always such a fun place to explore and there are so many Yokai to befriend. All of the QR Codes of work again for this game, so you can use them to your heart’s content. This game really allows you to play how you want and that is a good thing.

Psychic Specters also comes with a lot of extra content, to build upon the first two entries. You can now befriend the Wicked Yokai which is a cool thing. Those Wicked Yokai looked really cool and I am glad to be able to befriend them. They certainly act nicer once befriended but it just is cool to have former baddies on your side.

There is also a full story for Dame Deadtime, who in my opinion is a truly terrible villain. Her boss fight can be tedious, and her character to me just seems weak. But it is always interesting learning about characters. You also get the whole story on Darknyan which is another interesting one. Far more interesting to me than the Dame’s story.

You can also befriend other strange Yokai including the Jewelnyans and the nose picking Snottle. After completing the main story head to Yokai Land and experience a whole new area. Psychic Blasters is a revamped version of Yokai Watch Blasters and the perfect lead up to the full game which should come westward in the future.

All in all, if you liked Yokai Watch 2 you will certainly enjoy this game. If you have the first one you can transfer your save file and continue from where you left off. Or start fresh, and experience the game all over again. This game is also great for anyone who has only played the first game or never at all. It has a good beginning section and allows you to see all the Yokai from both games.

Yokai Watch 2 Psychic Specters is a great RPG and one that you’ll probably enjoy. If you haven’t yet, you can get this game on your 3DS in stores or on the Eshop!

By Stark Wyvern On 9 Jul, 2017 At 03:40 AM | Categorized As NINTENDO, Nintendo 3DS, Reviews, Reviews | With 0 Comments

No GravatarI rarely find myself playing games involving numbers anymore but recently I was able to try out a new game for myself. Pic A Pix Color is a simple game on the 3DS and is rather cheap as it is only 5 dollars. This game certainly has a simple premise and that is to solve little puzzles.

These puzzles revolved around creating pictures with numbers noting how many of color will show up. Of course, as you play more puzzles they get harder and harder. With 100 puzzles to play you certainly have a lot to play. This game might be perfect for someone who enjoys puzzle games or even someone who just wants to get a little light stress challenge gaming in. You could say, play a puzzle a day for 100 days and see how good you feel.

This game doesn’t end there though as there are even time trials to complete. If you complete a puzzle in a good time and don’t ask for help, you will be awarded a medal. This game is certainly something you could play multiple times if you wanted to have the satisfaction of clearing it as fast as possible.

With 10 dollars worth of DLC, you can even get more puzzles to play all of the varying difficulty. While not my favorite game, it was certainly worth playing, and it is a steal for those who truly love puzzles and numbers. If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, then you should get it as 5 dollars truly is a steal for a game.

No GravatarThis is another special episode of “Geeks on the Internet Having a Beverage” with EGM alum Trickman Terry Minnich. We talk about old times at EGM and all of the work he did back then. We discuss how he found the tips and tricks for games. He talks about the process of coming up with the infamous Shen Long trick. He got in the ins and outs of making the layouts and other aspects of the print industry. It is truly an honor to chat it up with him.

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This is one of the more unusual games I have played. I am not even sure how to describe it, because it mixes so many genres in so many ways. Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters: Daybreak Special Gigs is a game that mixes visual novels with RPGs but the blending is not a hundred percent perfect. It tries to be something new, but just ended up as something strange. It isn’t bad, but I guess I have to admit that it is just something I haven’t really encountered in this format before.

A Re-release of Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters: Daybreak, this version comes with an extended story. The same plot of high school students and scientists taking on the supernatural is there, but is expanded on in many ways. The gameplay is mostly unchanged, with the visual novel style of choices to move the story forward, combined with tactical RPG battles. This part of the gameplay is rather fun and I wish there was more of it. These battles require a lot of strategic thought and planning and to me, were the best part of the entire game experience.

Overall, the game is rather gorgeous, with eye popping artwork that really helps it stand out. For some reason the art in this game just stood out to me more than in other games of this kind. Maybe it was the power of the PlayStation 4, but this was just amazing. The one part that does bug me is that it uses photographs as backgrounds a lot. This does take away from the experience a bit.

Overall this is an okay game and if you liked the original releases, you might like this one. Its difficult to recommend because I am not sure who the target audience is, but I will say that when the game is fun, it is a lot of fun.

 

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Drinkbox Studios has released some excellent games over the years including the amazing metroidvania style game Guacamelee!, and now have brought their latest masterpiece to Nintendo systems. Severed is a first person game focused on touch screen controls and a creepy atmosphere. How did it hold up in the transition to Wii U? Rather well actually.

When playing Severed, you will almost certainly be focusing exclusively on the gamepad and not the TV due to the emphasis on the touch screen. Severed is one of the best uses of the Wii U gamepad I have seen, especially since it takes full advantage of the touch screen capabilities while also giving you some traditional controls as well. The interactions with the environment happen in a variety of ways, such as swiping the screen to remove obstacles, find hidden gems and moving gears to open doors.

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The game has an amazing horror atmosphere and the music helps that. It gives you a sense of creepiness and a feeling that you are always in danger. There is always some terror waiting for you, lurking where you do not expect. The first person perspective combined with the way you move, work well with the music to create one of the best feelings of anxiety ever. I cannot say enough good about the music, it really does its job well.

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There are some negatives though. The game’s combat can be very difficult to get a hang of and can be unforgiving at times. Adapting to multiple enemies will take a lot of time and effort, as you will need to learn to keep moving and make certain enemies a priority while not ignoring other enemies. Its not all bad and once you get the hang of it, you can do very well. Its just that there is some difficulty in learning this. Its fun once that’s out of the way so be patient.

Severed is a great experience and I would recommend it, just be aware you will need some patience with it.

No GravatarThe God Eater games have always had a cult following, stemming from its PSP origins over 5 years ago. Fans fell in love with its quirky, insane monster design and Monster Hunter-esque gameplay. God Eater 2: Rage Burst is the re-release of last year’s God Eater 2 with added features like survival missions, gear and extended story content.

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You are a member of Blood, an elite unit of God Eaters, whose sole purpose is ridding the world of Aragami. The Aragami are monsters that have completely taken over the planet. Aragami come in all terrifying shapes and sizes from people-sized demon plants to gigantic bug-dinosaur looking monstrosities. The awesome creature design makes every boss encounter more worthwhile, as the big baddies become more and more outrageous.

 

You’re not alone in your God Eating, your teammates all fall into the typical J-RPG spectrum of personalities from the stoic team leader, all the way down to the ditzy scantily-clad bad-ass who really likes to eat. I’ll admit at first I eye-rolled at a lot of the writing but the team aboard our flying fortress, Friar, did grow on me.

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There are really good character moments in between mission that reveal a lot of your crew’s motivations. Early on a teammate concocts a scheme to stage a meeting with a visiting pop-star. The humor in Rage Burst balances the grim reality of monsters displacing people into ghettos worldwide in a way that I really appreciated.

In order to fight the good fight, God Eaters use God Arcs, a Swiss-army type weapon system that houses a ranged weapon, melee weapon and shield. It’s a neat system that lets you change weapon types on the fly. Managing your God Arc becomes a herculean task considering the endless combinations of weapons you can craft and upgrade. I found myself loving the Buster Sword/Sniper/Shield combo.

If you want to really kick ass, you need to be able to effective switch your God Arc weapons suit your needs and being able to identify a specific Aragami’s weakness and when to press for the attack. I found that memorizing the attack pattern of each monster is the best way to get results. Combos and charge attacks on big melee weapons like hammers and scythes do crazy damage and feel good when you catch a monster from behind.https://realotakugamer.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=24449&action=edit#titlediv

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Each mission lets you bring in up to 3 computer controlled teammates that do a surprisingly good job of not being a hindrance and I even opted to recruit actual players for harder missions via online co-op. I suggest bringing in some buddies early on since the beginning missions are so utterly boring.

Rage Burst’s biggest letdown is in its mission design which is basically just from an arena filled with monsters. The first few hours are a bit of a drag since you can essentially sleepwalk through most of these conflicts, considering you don’t really need to use of the advanced combat techniques until you’re 8-10 hours in. I found myself having to replay a bunch of these missions in order to grind out loot and crafting materials.

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The customization options for Rage Burst are dense. The player-created protagonist has access to literally thousands of outfit and weapon combinations. There are plenty of loot and game rewards replaying mission in order to gain higher ranks scoring better loot. Join an online game and you’ll just how ridiculous and/or awesome you could potentially look.

Rage Burst also isn’t a great looking game. Most of the mission reuse the same locations, so just get used to fighting in the same bombed-out city landscapes for a good long while. This is a shame considering the character and monster design are so fun and full of personality.

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There is a rather steep learning curve. Advanced techniques are not explained all that well unless you do some digging in the database and become intimately aware with the all the System Terms. It was only after playing for about 10 hours that I figured out exactly what Bursts actually do. Other skills like parrying and using Zero Stance would have saved me a lot of heartache if I knew where to look earlier.

It’s easy to lose a lot of time playing God Eater 2: Rage Burst. If you can make it through the painfully slow start, you can find a deep and addictive action-RPG that could compete with the likes of Monster Hunter. This is all assuming you’re patient enough to put with a boring start, frustratingly steep learning curve and sub-par visuals.