Monthly Archives: May 2013

Review #007: Beastie Bay (Andriod) review ~ Let’s go exploring.

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Wiki page of this game

Alright guys, let’s go for a game on a platform I never expect to create reviews on. I wrote a review on this game before but that was rather summing up the good and bad parts in a list. But I’m going to expand on my forum review of this game and I’m going to give it a proper full review now that I played it even more. This game is free on the Android Market and the App Store and is made by the Japanese developer KarioSoft who is also known for great games like Game Dev Story. This game really took me many times back to my tablet. Is this game my guilty pleasure or is it actually good and fun to play? Let’s dive right into Beastie Bay.

What is this game?

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Saying that this is an adventure game, I would tell you that you are correct. You would be right too if you said it’s a simulator. But I would also agree if you say it’s a RPG. This game covers multiple genres quite nicely.

The gameplay is extremely well and is actually pretty deep for a mobile game. At the start you get the basics explained and from there you can discover the game on your own. I love it how games do that, leave things up for the community or you to discover.

But one complaint I have is that the controls to place buildings are a bit uneasy. Even the cursorpad you get doesn’t help that much since it can get annoying to work with. You have to play the game to understand what I mean here but the controls are the best they can get but they don’t 100% work.

But for a mobile game it’s impressive how they get all these controls on a touchscreen without cluttering up the UI too much. I’m blown away that I feel like my complaint is such a nitpick that you actually can overlook it.

But back to the gameplay. You need to survive. It wasn’t too clear at the start to me that you needed to place your farms close to your allies and other villagers or they don’t get harvested. Did I loose a lot of wood because of that. And here comes one major complaint with this game.

When your island grows, you can set shops for villagers of nearby islands to come and buy things. But if that villager finds wood, it doesn’t go to your resource pile. Nope, it goes to their shop. For that reason, I have to recruit a lot of new allies to just surround them with tree farms. This is something that the developers easily could improve on.

Explore the seven seas.

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I like exploring as much as the next guy, but in this game, it’s extremely limited. You actually give orders to the AI to explore a certain area. And actually, it works. When you encounter an enemy you can start fighting the enemy in a sort of Final Fantasy-ish battle.

This is extremely fun and adds more depth to the game. But here we bump into the “not so free” part of this game. To remove level caps in the game, you’ll need a lot of golden coins. You barely ever get them in the game, sometimes by just playing, but you can get a lot by actually buying them with real hard cash.

But if you are in for some grinding, there is a way how you can get many coins easily, but that’ll take up some time. And I’ll leave that up for you guys to figure out by yourself.

The story is actually not present in this game. You are stranded on an island together with your ally and you go and explore and try to survive. And somehow, this game doesn’t need a story. This game is pretty fine how it is.

The gameplay might be simple but it’s not easy. Some dungeons and area’s will get difficult really quick.  Also, some parts of the game really made me scratch my head in confusion since I didn’t understand how the game wanted me to do.

How good is it really?

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With KairoSoft, I notice a sort of tradition. The graphics are extremely well done. They are borrowed from their other titles but it’s how you recognize them.

But then the music. I swear that there aren’t more then 5 to 6 tracks in the whole game, and you need to listen to one track over and over again. This gets old extremely fast. The sound effects are over the most line the same for many actions and somethings could have used some soundeffects in my opinion.

Also, the shops are crazy expensive and the game has so many menu’s you easily get lost and you might have to make a to-do list.

In addition to that, trying to capture creatures is a big guessing game which bait they might like. In addition to that, it’s so rare that they actually like that bait, you end up with almost never recruiting allies.

The day and night cycle is actually a pretty nice touch. It made me often rush to a dungeon since I wanted to try to catch a certain creature or defeat one since they gave a lot of XP.

The game is pretty lenghty too. You won’t finish this game in one sitting. I actually advise you to play this game in short bursts, like no longer then a hour or two. Since playing this game for long times can get you bored. This is a game meant to be played in short bursts.

So, I have been talking for quite a while about a mobile game, it’s time to wrap things up before I go running in circles.

Conclusion

The good:

+ Addictive gameplay.

+ Very varied.

+ Extremely well made controls, with some slight flaws but they work.

+ This game can be hard here and there but with dedication you will get there.

+ Amazing graphics.

The bad:

– Music and sounds.

– Grinding.

– The difficulty goes up way to fast.

– Sometimes the game is a bit overwhelming.

– Most upgrades and shop items are way to expensive.

Final thoughts: 

This game isn’t for everybody. It’s a game with some flaws. Plus, you need to be able to look over ads. It’s a great game and surely worth a play in my eyes but it isn’t a big game you would be putting your PS3 down for.

Yet, this game is excellent to play while on the road or waiting for the doctor. You easily see that the developers put their hearts and souls into this game and they deserve your download.

Score: 70/100

Review #006: Playmobil Top Secret Agents (DS) ~ Climb ladders with stone.

Playmobil Game

This game didn’t have a site, so here is the GameSpot page. 

My buddies over at Arpegi wanted me to review something different. Games I never really finished like SuperMan 64 came up. So, it’s obvious that they wanted me to review a bad game. I selected this “gem” instead. It’s a game I, tried, to play and never really 100% finished. Like I said in my Corpse Party impression article, I usually write about games when I’m completely finished them. But this game is different. On my old Dutch blog, I had simply a list of why this game was so terrible. But I am now going to give it a fair review. Let’s see if I wasn’t harsh on this game, I actually went ahead and replayed the game for as long as I could and then started writing this article. I’m rather curious how it’s going to turn out since my list of things I want to talk about has grown each part of the game. That can be a good and a bad thing since I didn’t tell if it were praises or complaints. One thing is for sure, it isn’t a good good game, it’s not going to get many points. But like the Happy Video Game Nerd has a video series, how bad is it really? And is it worth playing it? Even if it’s only to see how bad it truly is.

So, what’s the game?

playmobil-top-agents-nintendo-ds-001_mAlright, let’s dive right into this game. The first thing I have to men

The music sounds like a track of not even a minute looped over and over. The music sounds like something you created in a program where you can drap & drop samples into a timeline.tion is that I always let the game music play while I’m writing the review. To get in the mood for writing the review. So, I get reminded of how the game played. But do I now regret that decision. The music isn’t terrible but it’s isn’t what a game of this name.

So, I haven’t left the menu screen just yet. The font of the menu screen is terrible. When I’m on the menu where I can pick new game files, the word “game” looks almost like the replaced the letter G with an eight. Some letters are pretty close to each other and some letters like the “W” seem to take up more space then they should.

Plus, it wouldn’t surprise me that they didn’t play much games before this. Which game actually says, “Delete game file”? So, in other words, you can delete the game files from the menu screen? Well, that’s a very new and risky feature. I’ll be sure to try that out.

So, I skip somethings at the menu’s and dive right into the gameplay. One thing I can credit this game for, the game looks clean and inviting to play. They did a good job there. The music gets a little bit better but doesn’t sound catchy at all.

Plus, the names in the game are way to generic. Like the story. A random bad guy suddenly takes over the city or world and after you have some minor plotholes, you are left with a confused mind after the introduction. I can understand that

this game might be based on a cartoon series or a comic book show but they then leave the guys who don’t follow it in the dark and confused.

Climb ladders with stone.

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After the opening you get an extremely long introduction to the story. And like you would expect, the story is extremely generic. It’s a kids game, I can forgive it but it’s extremely forgettable. Wait, I actually take something back. A kids game can have a pretty memorable story. If you take of the Nintendo games and look at the games that are targeted towards kids, you can clearly see that the story is rather interesting.

I went through the effort to make this screenshot myself. This clearly shows the Q&A (word for quality testing) that this game lacks. The animation goes down in my eyes since you don’t climb up the ladder correctly. And here is the thing, it’s the very first ladder you meet in the game.

I forgot to actually mention that you need to press select after each dialogue/cut scene. And I had and actually have still trouble adjusting to that.

I touched on this before but the names don’t improve this game. “Jet Girl” and “Agent SPY” are two prime examples of this.

I have to give this game also some positive feedback, the game’s controls actually do work. And the game does what’s supposed to do. But let’s go further into the game and let’s see if it gets any better, or worse.

The driving. 

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On my previous blog I didn’t gave this game a full review like I’m doing now. And I want to correct that with this review. I often play games that aren’t targeted to my age or my style but when I got to the part where I needed to hit the road, I gave up.

I’m truly patient with games and I like to give them a fair chance, but this game truly lost me at the driving part. The drivers ride all over the place and they can’t turn at the road at all. It almost seems like the game’s animation is based on a grid and made and then the levels are designed. Sadly enough, this makes things break when a level is changed.

Also, I don’t get why on so many places you need to be reminded of the current date & time. That’s a truly “helpful” feature. It’s almost like they put this feature in so that the kids have no excuse anymore when it’s time to stop playing and go to bed.

I also don’t like how the game asks your language every time you start. This is similar to how you don’t have buttons to not have to press the select button after the 2nd or 3rd time you have to. Genius!

But back to the driving. It simply doesn’t work solid enough. Textures can glitch in each other, cars can ride in each other. Your radar/ map isn’t clear and the controls truly are messed up and unresponsive at times. Also, the game got a lot uglier at these parts and it looks pixelated as if this game was for MS-DOS. What I’m trying to get to is that this game doesn’t look sharp in these sections.

And at this part I started to loose interest. I remember from the first time I played this game that this is actually couple of mini-games. And judging that you can select these from the main menu, the game must be a “blast to play”. Since this gives me the impression that the game is rather short. Well, time for the conclusion.

Conclusion

The good:

+ The game controls work in the non-driving sections.

+ The non-driving sections look inviting.

The bad:

– Nearly no sound effects.

– Lacking story.

– Terrible driving.

– Annoying menu’s.

– Bad animation.

– Music that isn’t fun.

– Extremely easy game.

– Glitchy AI, like in the driving parts.

– Uncreative names.

My final thoughts:

I played a lot of Playmobil when I was young and I got excited when I saw this game. And oh boy, do I regret this buying impulse that I sold this game. I normally don’t get rid of games but this game was way to terrible to play.

This game lost my interest extremely fast. I have read some other reviewers talk about this game being fun for kids, but if you are a kid or a parent, I don’t advise this game at all. There are way better games to play that are way more fun and will be less frustrating then this one. The Nintendo DS library is big but this is one of the games that is a mold on the game library.

Don’t buy this game, it’s extremely bad and doesn’t deserve any positive attention. I might be very harsh here but this game is one of the worst games I have actually played without seeing it in a TOP 10 list.

Score: 20 / 100

10 most influential games (series) in my life.

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I played a lot of games. On the computer, DS, gameboy and many other platforms. In this article I will talk about my list of games/game series that had the most influence on my life, game life and or style. This list is somewhat in an order, but sometimes this list can change for me currently. I won’t update this list but it might happen that I make another list with 10 influential games to me. But one thing is for sure. These 10 are the current games that have or had the most influence on me. They either made me love a game genre, a series, make me happy or made me change my personality. As experiment, I would like to know what games you guys think changed you. Drop them in the comments. Probably there will be similar games. But all these games on this list come extremely recommend. There is rule though, when I select a game from a series, I won’t use the series again in another slot. That’s why I allowed myself to pick game series.

#10: 9 Hours, 9 People, 9 Doors & Virtue’s Last Reward

999I already explained why I liked Virtue’s Last Reward so much. In that review I also mentioned the game 999. This game didn’t come to Europe and I had to import this game.

I am truly glad that I imported this game for my DS. The story is quite thrilling and made me love the visual novel genre. Since this game, I got a harsh judge on game stories. I get somewhat disappointed when a game has a weak story that doesn’t draw me in. All thanks to this game.

I often listen to the music, which makes many situations intense. I often use it as inspiration when I am writing stories, whenever I have to write a trilling part. It makes the story write itself.

What I loved so much are the puzzles to escape a room. I often try the Android games where you need to escape a room. It doesn’t do the same thing to me but hey, nostalgia!

In addition to that, the different endings where genius. There were based on the path you took and really made you come back to see what actually happened.

#9:  Game Dev Story

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 A fair warning, when you download this game onto your Android or iPhone, well be prepared to not put it down for quite a while.

This game is getting pretty popular to the point where GreenHartGames made a spin-off on it. But it’s this game that made me think. Are there good games on the Android market like this one? And yes, there are. I explored the Android Market and really got some fun games to play.

I was against tablets but thanks to this game I got myself a tablet for my last birthday and I sometimes continue my adventures on the Android market.

The game actually made me do something I always wanted to do. Make games and being the head of a game company. The amazing references really make the game have some humor that even make it less easy to put this game down. The other games of this studio are extremely fun and really a play worth but this game is where it started for me.

#8: Age Of Empires / Age Of Mythology

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This game series was very important to me since it introduced me into strategy games. I recall many moments where I go online with the Age Of Mythology to do some matches.

It made me even go so far that when I played cop & robber with my friends that we got somehow to a version of this game. Yes, I swear that we played these kinds of things in my backyard.

This game series is nearly flawless, expect the major failure that is named Age Of Empires Online, and I still love it to this day. I follow blogs and people who make expansion packs on their own for the games and I often try them out.

This game really made me and my sister sit behind the computer for hours on end. We even asked if we could install the game on our parents their computer, so we could play over LAN. Those were fun days.

I once even entered a tournament where I lost, but I truly remember getting ready for it and trying new strategies out all day.

I’m now grown out of the game. It has been quite some time since I played one of the series. Well, maybe after this article I go get my game discs and install and play it.

#7: Halo (PC)

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I hate shooters, yet I often play one. My view on shooters really changed thanks to this game. I might call myself a fan of the series. I don’t own a XBOX 360 to play the other games, and I don’t plan to. A good friend of mine told me that they are going in the wrong direction with the series.

This game I played online so often that my mother got angry that I didn’t play anything else then shooters. And I had to shut down the game for a while.

I played this game even with my girlfriend and I truly had some big fun. The story in this game was extremely well done and made me try other shooters. A genre I think is overpopulating the market now-a-days.

It also made my interests go to space for quite a while and when I heard there was a DS game under development I got extremely excited. And man, was I disappointed that this game was canceled or fake. I don’t know it for sure yet.

If you haven’t played this game, shame on you, get this game and play it after you read this article. It’s fun and after I finished this game again, I will sure to write a review on this gem of a game. But yeah, most people probably played this game already since the first XBOX got popular thanks to this game.

#6: Rollercoaster Tycoon

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“Mom and dad, please don’t shut down our PC. We’ll lose our progress.”.  I don’t remember how often I told that to my parents when playing this game. The version we had, had trouble loading save files and we finished to scenario’s in one go.

My sister & I played this game an awful lot on the computer, and we actually took turns to finish a scenario. When one of us was playing this game, the other sat there watching carefully and enjoying seeing the park grow and getting more money.

As kids, we weren’t all that great in finishing this game. We made stupid decisions yet, we had some major fun.

Like with the 3rd game. I was so thrilled when I got my stronger computer for Christmas and when I was able to play this game at home. Before I had to wait when we went to my grandparents because their computer was strong enough to run the game. I even remember that I had to write on their blackboard in order to ask permission to play the game. Yeah, bad handwriting.

But I never played the 2nd game in the series. Now that my collection is complete of this series, I am going to try the 2nd game rather soon after I finish the first game.

#5: Ace Attorney series

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Playing as an attorney is boring! OBJECTION! It isn’t. At all. This game actually introduced me to the visual novel series, and I am grateful for that.

Nearly everything in these games is perfect in my eyes and when I’m going to review them, I will have some major trouble finding bad things in these games.

Some quotes of the game even slipped in my vocabulary and yes, some character movements actually slipped inside my handelings.

I’m extremely excited to see the 5th game in stores since we didn’t get one game in the series.

This series truly made my love for my Nintendo DS even grow bigger and I never could put it down since then. So HOLD IT, and give this game a go. You won’t regret it if you like games where you need to think and get a great story.

#4: Minecraft

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Do you truly require me to explain why Minecraft has such a big influence on me? My review wasn’t clear enough about that? Oh well, let me tell you why it’s so important to me.

First of all, it made me travel to Paris again. For MineCon, where other Minecrafters gather. I rarely go outside my house. (Let’s ignore my theatre group here)

Secondly, this game brought my friends and myself pretty close. My best friend MiseryLC & I wouldn’t be such good buddies if it wasn’t for Minecraft.

Third, this game let me do what I want. Nothing in the game is going to limit me to play the game how I want.

And last point is, I met my girlfriend thanks to Minecraft. Long story, I’ll spare you guys. But that are 4 major reasons why this game deserves such a high spot in this list.

#3: Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine 

256px-Indiana_Jones_and_the_Infernal_MachineSurprisingly enough, this game doesn’t get the number one spot. The game that spawned my nickname. I love the Indiana Jones series and actually it’s something that has been extremely important in my life.

I remember seeing the first movie in the rental store and after I watched it as a 7 year old, mostly not understanding a letter of what they were saying, I was hooked.

I watched the other movies and once one of my cousins learned that, he showed me this game. And I loved it right away. I didn’t play anything 3D before this game and when we started playing this game, like I told, I couldn’t stop playing.

My love for the Indiana Jones games went a bit downhill once Indiana Jones and the Emperor’s Tomb was released but I prefer this game above the other one. This is a game I know nearly by heart. I often try to play it and I got me sad when I found out that I wasn’t able to finish my LP on my Youtube channel.

I played the levels in my backyard together with friends. Yes, we tried to make it exactly go like how the developers made the level in the game.

Oh, and thanks LucasArts. Rest in peace guys.

#2: Pokémon (and all their spin-offs)

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Find me one gamer of my generation that doesn’t know the first Pokémon game. This game is almost so well known it might just be popular then the flagship title of Nintendo.

I really love this series, and I’m ashamed that I didn’t finished the latest entries yet (I got distracted by other games),  and I plan to replay the games rather soon.

The many spin-offs in this series really made me love the series more. I loved to draw circles in Pokémon Ranger, and I even started to have interested when I played Pokémon Pinball.

Every game in the series has an element that draws me in and makes me finish the game.I’m really looking forward to the newest games X & Y. To see what they are going to do with the series next. But now, I need to finish the latest Mystery Dungeon game.

So, what’s your favorite generation? Mine is the 3rd one. The Ruby, Saphire and Emerald games are truly my biggest favorites and recently have beaten my old favorites Gold & Silver.

#1: The Legend of Zelda

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The people who know me really should have seen this one coming. I simply can’t put down a Zelda game. I truly am a big Zelda fan. When I was on my trip to America, I bought myself a wallet, shirts and other merchandise of the series.

I nearly got a tear in my eye when I was able to hold an actual NES cartrigde of the first game. (I don’t own a NES, but I have the first game as the GBA release).

I am such a big fan that I even saved up to go to the concert of the Zelda music. Wait, that’s mostly classical music and I listen to electronic genres. Yes, my dedication for the series is that big.

I own even the Zelda Historia AND I pre-ordered my DS for the only reason that there was a Zelda game released on it. It was also my first game I played and did I enjoy it.

I can talk ages about the series but I won’t. I need to finish this article.

Honorable mentions.

Let’s just write it in a list. Freddi Fish, Broken Sword, God Of War, Dragon Quest, Time Hollow, Peggle, Tetris DX, Draw My Life, Corpse Party, Hungry Shark Evolution, Kirby, Desperados, Devil May Cry 4….

I can go on for a long time but this article has run long enough. It pains my hart that I had to leave out so many great games. I might even have forgotten some great games. Oh well, maybe I write another article about this subject where I talk about 10 other games that changed my life. But like I said, these 10 games are the 10 MOST influential. Thanks for reading and I hope that I see you another time on my blog.

Cheers,

NekoJonez~

(16+) First impression: Corpse Party (PSP) ~ Elementary school gone bad.

Corpse Party (USA)

 Link to the site

!! While I do realize that the majority of people ignore age labels on games, I want to warn you that this game is a graphic game and contains elements that maybe can influence younger minds or weak hearted in the wrong way. !!

That how the legend went. Yeah, the red text is a warning. Or is it? Well, it’s true that this game isn’t for the “pussies” of gamers. This game has the potential to either make you shiver or somewhat scared. It has disturbing moments and it’s fun. In this new series I’ll talk about games you should play or you should try out. I found this game recently, sadly enough not the European box-art, and I find it sad that in so many top 10 lists of PSP games this game gets overlooked. This game is very well crafted and once I finish it I’ll put up a review for this game. So subscribe to my blog or one of my social networks to be kept up-to-date. But for now, let’s go on with my first impression. What do I think about the game? And why do I recommend it? Let’s dive into this game that’s based on an excellent manga that every horror fan should read. 

Why shouldn’t you play it?

corpsepartyreview12076101Well, let’s switch things around like you usually would expect these articles to go. The game has some issues and why you shouldn’t play this game is simple.

The game has a terrible saving system in my opinion. This game could have gotten way better in the save department.

Also, the music glitches are a big bummer. I sometimes had the pleasure of walking in a silent area when there was supposed to be music.

And sometimes you wish there was a “skip dialogue” button. That’s all I have to say about that for now.

And that’s about all I can say for now. I’ll go more in depth in my review of course.

Why should you play this game?

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This game can take adventure games of guard easily. Oh yes, because one of my major hobbies is writing, I normally see plots coming but the start blew me away. It’s one of the better starts to a game or story I have ever seen. It truly pulls you in.

The game has the feeling of a visual novel and the art style truly does this game justice. I’m quite happy that they have chosen for this style since it gives me memories of seeing people play those old NES games like Sweet Home, yet it looks modern and RPG-ish.

But it’s for the story you need to play this game. It’s a story that will keep you on the edge of your seat. I’m truly bad with horror since I can’t stand jump scares, and believe me, there are so few you wouldn’t even notice.

The gameplay is great. It gave me a vibe of exploring like Alone in the Dark & Broken Sword for example did. You need to find clues but the twist is, if you do sometime wrong, or take a wrong path, well; You get the wrong ending and you need to start the chapter over or from your last save point.

CorpsePartyMy advice.

I already said in the introduction that this isn’t my review yet. But for now I truly recommend this game. It isn’t flawless but the game is truly worth a play.

The start of the game I experienced at night, just before I went to sleep, with my curtains closed and my room all dark. I attached my old headset and put the volume on nearly the loudest volume it could go. And then the game truly shines.

It isn’t a game that will make you go call your mommy awake because you as teenager gamer got so scared, but it will make you feel awkward and uneasy. It also made me want to read the manga.

If you can look past a bad saving system, this game can be something for you. But for the weak of heart, I truly advice thinking twice about this game since some things can truly be scary for you. Maybe I’m overly cautious here but sometimes it’s better if you do that.

Keep out an eye for my review to know what I thought of this game and what score I’m going to give it. I like to finish the games to looked for other points I would like to mention. But yeah, this rambling isn’t doing this article any good since I wanted to talk about this game.

I’m going to leave it here. Continue my playthrough of this game. I’m currently about to beat the 2nd chapter and once I finish this hidden gem of a game, I will hunt the sequel down. That’s for sure for me. So, happy gaming guys and let me know in the comments if this game was actually a nice recommendation.

Review #005: Virtue’s Last Reward (3DS) ~ But you promised…

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Link to the official English site.

You are locked up. You don’t know where you are or what your goal is. It’s time to play a game. No, not with a Saw but with a bunny. Yes, Zero Junior. You thought you could escape in the previous game, 9 hours 9 people 9 doors (For the DS, I’ll review this game one day)? Then think again. This time, you will have some major trouble. The game will go totally different now, and you will have a lot more explained.  Are you ready for an adventure? One that you rather didn’t have, one you regret living for? Okay, enough of that. This game got me extremely excited to play, I even didn’t know this game came to Europe. But when I saw it in my local game store, I bought the game with the little money I had and that night I didn’t sleep. But why? Is this such a good game and if it is, did it deliver? Or  was my sleepless night because of the terrible game I had to play? Well, let’s dive into this game and let’s check if it’s actually worthy to be played.

Zero III.

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This game isn’t your regular game. Oh no, it proves that the 3DS has games that aren’t for kids. This game is for 16 and up and for a good reason, it’s a scary game. Not supernatural but the scenery and the story is pretty creepy.

The game’s story is amazing and is extremely well done. It can be a bit cheesy here and there but I can forgive that. Some reviewers will tell that those points in a story are boring and all that, but those things actually aren’t all that bad, they don’t take you out of the experience.

A big improvement is that you can now jump inside the story. The game has several endings and to unlock the final true ending, you need to have seen most, if not all, other endings. If you are playing with breaks, the story can get confusing when you jump though, so pay attention.

If I talk about the story, I might spoil it for you. But it’s a great story. For the people who follow me on Twitter before I started this blog, you might have noticed that I tweeded this game to some Youtubers who looked for new games on their 3DS.

Even talking when this game takes place in the series in a spoiler. But the new UI in this game is a vast improvement over the last interface. Like I told earlier, this game’s jump manic in the story helps out a lot, so you don’t have to redo parts of the story like in the original. Also, it’s more clear which path you need to take to unlock a new ending, so the danger of running into a same ending twice is gone.

What pissed me off in game, but is an extremely nice touch is that some endings have a story lock. Yes, you need information from another ending. Confused? Well, I was too. But it gets extremely well explained in the game and I advise you to play it for the story alone.

I want to get out!

VLR_Screen_5

The game is a mixture of visual novel and puzzle game. Your goal is to escape a certain room and find more clues. What’s unique in this game is that when you do it without getting hints, you unlock developer content. This makes for a lot of replay value in a visual novel game. Yes, they succeeded into getting replay value in a game that’s extremely story driven. Most visual novel games collect dust after they are finished.

The animation is extremely well done. Each character has their unique expressions and makes the story come more alive then the previous game. Even in 3D, the game is extremely awesome to look at. The location of the game itself is well done. You truly get the feeling of being trapped and wanting to escape.

The puzzles you need to solve aren’t that easy. Most puzzles require you to use that thing up in your head, your brain. The game will challenge you with sliding puzzles, logic puzzles and much more. A great tip is that you need to carefully look around in a room to not miss anything.

No area is repetitive. Each one has unique puzzles related to that place. I even didn’t find any similar puzzles from the previous game. The story and gameplay is also way different, except the escaping parts. In this game, the door to escape is right in front of your face, yet, the “key” isn’t.

The music is, are you ready for this, epic. I can’t find any bad song in the game or any tune I didn’t like. Often, I start a playlist on Youtube and listen to the music while I play games like Minecraft. The music gives the right vibes on the right moment. Surprisingly there are a lot of different tracks and all are of a decent length. Most of the tracks even have one word long names. Which is a nice touch of the developers.

Some parts in the game have even voice acting. This makes the game feel alive. You feel that you grow a bond with the characters and this makes you want to play more.

virtue-s-last-reward-nintendo-3ds-1358438633-030_m

Perfect?


This game is extremely close to being perfect to me. The music, animation, story, gameplay… It’s all there. Yet, I found some flaws in this game that really made me wonder. Are they going to address these issues in the sequel?

The first issue is the disappointing save file corruption glitch on the 3DS. Yes, I truly advise you all not to save in the puzzle rooms or your data can get corrupt. I learned it the hard way. The developers have yet to come out with a patch sadly enough.

In my opinion, the sound effects are lacking. Not that they aren’t good, they are pretty well done. But the same is silent without the music and really could use a bit more on the sound department in my opinion.

Also, some puzzles, the one with the liquor especially, are a bit tedious. Changing liquor and changing and more changing, it gets boring extremely quick.

Another small flaw is that the story becomes a bit predictable in the yet to unlock endings if you finished others. Either you already know some information or a similar path is walked on. But it helps with the continuity of the story though.

As a final remark, this game has a flaw it can’t fix. This game’s story will leave you with an empty feeling when it’s done. You don’t want to see “The End” anytime soon. This game is extremely good and the length, well it’s a long game. But when it’s over, you want more. More  escaping…

Conclusion

The good:

+ Epic story.

+ Great soundtrack.

+ Amazing gameplay.

+ Various and many improvements over the original.

+ The new elements in the game really helps the game.

+ Voice acting.

+ Additional content.

The bad: 

– Sounds, could be done a bit more.

– Save file corruption.

Conclusion:

This game is really close of getting a 100 of me. Did I enjoy this game? Of course I did. I was sad when the game was over and I actually plan to replay the game this summer. I might already know what is going to happen and how it will end, but the puzzles and the whole game are so fun to play through.

This game isn’t for everyone though. But once you get into the gameplay, you won’t let this game go easily. It’s such a well done game, I wish I still could play it a bit more. I normally don’t care about additional content like texts of the developers but in this game I did. Can you unlock them all?

Score: 99/100

Rant #002: Broken Menus

Broken menu minecraft

Don’t you just love it? You are playing a game and the menus are all glitched up? Like in this screenshot, where the “Done” button is too stubborn to move. This is a curse that many modders have in Minecraft. But in my current playthrough of certain games, I have encountered some issues with menus for me to talk about in this rant. But before I continue, what problems did you guys have had with menus before? Let me know in the comments. Maybe I’ll add them in a follow-up article if I ever write one. So let’s dive into the menu and my rant about them. 

Standard menu’s?

I often ask myself, why do developers not have some rules about the menu’s? I recently tried out Call Of Duty and the options to change the controls are separate. Great, I looked over it since I expected them to be under an options tab.

All the menu’s in the games are different. I have no big issue with that. The might try to fit the style of the game. But, the issue is mainly that all options have a different spot in each game. What really makes me nervous is when developers don’t give you a chance to play a game in a windowed mode or in full screen. Some games stay full screen anyways. Or when you can’t change the screen sizes to the screen size of your monitor.

A big example of a bad menu design is Overlord. Yes, for the options there are two menus. Awesome! But the most useful options like screen size and the changing of buttons is in the launcher and you can’t access that in-game. This made me close and restart the game often to try to really fit the controls to my likeness.

To accept or not to accept?

Why do so many games have menus where you need to click on “accept” before the changes happen? For older games, I can forgive that, but in more recent games I have seen so many examples where the game changes the settings as soon as you change the setting. Even a preview button would be sweet.

This extremely confuses me, to the extent where I look in every game for an accept button or I get mad went the changes didn’t happen because I missed the “accept” button.

Another annoying example is how messy the Devil May Cry menus are. The buttons to accept options are, well displayed if they would be on a controller. What is the holy name of flying cows? Not everybody has an XBOX guy so, not everybody has a controller to attach to their computer.

This actually gives me the opportunity to do a small additional rant. Who plays with a controller on a computer? For emulators, yes, but for PC games? Oh heck no, this just silly. That shows to me that you rather have the console version. It’s so silly to sit there with a controller when you have a whole array of buttons to press on your keyboard.

Tooltips

Tooltips are a great way of letting the player know what option does what. But oh so many games don’t have this. They just throw the option in your face and you have to guess what it is.

What I really like is how some sound menus have a sample that plays when you lower or raise the volume. All those games need to have that, it’s great to just tweak it to your heart’s content.

But truth to be told, you have games where the menus are so extreme, that it’s a game in itself to navigate them. Most sandbox games like SimCity have this. Where you are actually playing with the menu most of the time.

RollerCoaster Tycoon, the first game, has a big issue with menu’s as well. Each option is a menu. You can open a menu by almost clicking anywhere in-game. It’s extremely difficult to keep track of them all and I find the screen get easily cluttered with menus. And there is no real way of closing them all at once.

I can agree that some games are lacking options. But I will mention that in my reviews then. I think I’m going to leave it here for this rant. Actually with my conclusion.

Menus can be messy, different and not easy to navigate. There is a lot of improvement in this part of gaming. But once you see some touches in other games, you get annoyed that some games don’t have them. I realize that I haven’t talked about how bad the menus can be on Kinect games, and that’s simply because I don’t own one.

So, that’s all for this rant. Happy gaming and NekoJonez signing out!

Review #004: The Legend Of Zelda – Oracle Of Seasons ~ Which weather do we take today?

TLOZOOS

Link to the page in the Zelda wiki about this game.

So last review we went over the sister game of this game. Or brother game, whatever you prefer. I gave the Oracle Of Ages game a very high score. But is this game worthy of the same praise? It was released on the same day but that could make it flawed and feel very rushed. Well, for that you will need to stick around at the end of the review to get your answer. One thing I already can tell you, the game is pretty neat. But now I will dive into this game. The game that you need to play after Oracle of Ages, or before. It’s not that I’m trying to write this intro as long as the image for making it visually more interesting to read. Okay, I might be just doing that. So, enough rambling about the intro here and let’s dive into this game and check if it’s actually good or not. Maybe I lied earlier in the introduction, who knows?

Dancing on a tree stump

ZeldaOOSS1 In this game’s story you aren’t left alone. The introduction of the game is the same as the Oracle Of Ages game, you start by riding you trusty horse Epona. (Dirty minds aren’t my problem.) So, now the first people you meet actually claim that Din saved you. Which is strange, since they let you rot two screen away in the bushes. 

In the other game you talk to animals which doesn’t get explained, but who cares, it’s an adventure game. In this game, the problems pop up way sooner as Din is kidnapped. To be fair, this game has a great story. It might be your standard “rescue the kidnapped damsel in distress” but it has a twist in this game.

What’s pretty neat in this game is that you can change the seasons once you have the season staff. A concept I liked over the Ages game.

The story is now about a sleepy tree that aids you on your quest. Lucky for us, the tree doesn’t want to marry us. As you don’t receive the blade right away, it’s obvious that this game has less puzzles and more action. Yes, the Oracle games have split the Zelda formula in half. This is the more action game. As the other Oracle game, this game has also a 2nd dimension. It’s smaller, but it does the trick. I even dare to say that this game’s world is bigger then the ages game.

Overdoing Link’s clothing

Seasons

In the other dimension, the characters look like they are fans of Link. They all wear a green tunic, but in overdrive.

And this brings us to a disappoint point of the game, the bosses and some characters are and feel borrowed from previous games. As it’s an awesome nod to the older games, it makes the game feel a tad bit creative. There is certainly missed potential with remaking the bosses of the older games.

Yet, to be fair, the animation is great in this game. I really enjoyed the animation in this game and it really pulled me in this game. Also the graphics are extremely well done. How fast you can move through the seasons is better compared against the longer time travel animation of the Ages game.

The worlds look colorful, and white in the winter, and lively. The game has multiple chase quests that can get frustrating because of the limitations of the gameboy.

It still is impressive how the code linking works. If you named the child in the Ages game, the child will be here in the Seasons game. Like in the Ages game, there is also a trade quest, with the same pay-off. Play it to check it out.

Hairpulling

egaerear

The game is difficult. No doubt about that. You won’t go through this game in one sitting. The controls are pretty tight and if you die, it’s your fault. Even the jumping is less annoying the in the Ages game.

The items are actually creative. It still has the same gameplay as all the other Zelda portable games but like I said in my previous reviews, it’s extremely well implemented. But back on the subject of the items. You have great items, some of the Ages game, that you get to aid you in your quest. This game might be more difficult then Ages in terms of action but the puzzles in this game can be pretty hairpulling sometimes.

The biggest hair pulling moment is where you need to fight Onox. The final boss is extremely difficult because you need to use your spin attack, which is difficult to pull of since he uses Din as a shield. With Veran in Ages I had less trouble. The challenge is still pretty fair and after some practice you get the pattern down and you’ll be able to defeat him.

The last thing but not least, are the music and the sound effects. Like in Oracle of Ages, the sound effects are pretty standard. But the music is still pretty amazing. I extremely enjoy the music and really sets the mood. It’s really upbeat and the melodies sometimes kept stuck in my head for days on end.

Oh, before I forgot. In the Ages game you were able to select the track you wanted easily. Not here, if you want the right season, it’s using the staff on a tree stump and hoping it goes to the right season. Little bit annoying though.

Conclusion

The good:

+ Challenges everywhere.

+ Nice animation.

+ Extremely well done music.

+ Great story.

+ Unique items.

The bad:

– Soundeffects are pretty mediocre.

– The seasons should be better selectable.

– The chase missions.

– Missed opportunity with the final bosses.

Conclusion:

Do I truly need to repeat myself? This game is extremely well done but is a bit weaker then the Ages game. The game world is pretty big so this game will least you quite a while. I seriously enjoyed this game and I replay it often. I missed the moments where I was able to explore the game for the very first time since then the game is the most fun.

Score: 97/100

Review #003: The Legend Of Zelda: Oracle Of Ages (GBC) ~ No need for a car.

260px-Oracleofages

Zelda Wiki link for more information.

This game is the game that got me into the Legend Of Zelda series. But it’s not the first Zelda game I played, that was the GBA classic release of the original NES game. When I saw this game collecting dust on a stall at the flea market at my beach holiday, I decided to buy it. And man, did I have fun with this game. I got so frustrated with the “To be continued” screen. Since I needed to buy the 2nd Oracle game, Oracle of Seasons, which I’ll review a later day. Maybe my next review. But this game is great, so I really needed to pay attention that my fanboy-ish love for this game didn’t influence this review. I tried to be as fair and square for each game as I can. So, let’s dive into this game and tell you what is good and what is bad so you might consider buying the limited re-release on the 3DS e-shop when it comes out.

Accept your quest.

The game starts off with Link riding Epona, checking on the Triforce. Once arrived, the Triforce teleports him to the lands of Labrynna. There you meet Impa, well the more gray version of Impa. And then after some other events, all hell breaks lose. The flow of time gets then disrupted and it’s up to you to fix what Veran destroyed.

zelda-ages-screenshot

In short, the story was good for a handheld game. It will end up like your typical rescue story but there isn’t anything wrong with that. As long as it’s interestingly executed. Yet, I like the story of this game over the Oracle Of Seasons one. Yet, it uses elements that were used in a SNES game before. Time travel.

As the name would suggest, insert here a “You don’t say”.jpg, the game revolves around time travel. A lot of puzzles in this game require you to go back and forth from the past to the present. This actually doubles the world map of the already big game area.

What I like so much about the story of this game is that it’s so simple, you don’t even notice it’s there to begin with. The Zelda games are and have been adventure games to the core, and those have always epic tales of hero’s who fight evil. This one is about a tree that wants to marry you.

There is only one minor issue with the start. I got stuck in the first few screens of the game. Since you need to talk all the animals and then again to the bear. Yeah, not that easy. And yes, it’s a sign for what to come. Don’t take this game too lightly. This game is actually a great challenge for each generation. The bosses in the dungeon are creative and require you to think up unique ways to use the newly acquired item in the dungeon.

This game is filled with puzzles. Puzzles where you need to move blocks, where you need to get a floor all colored and where you need to solve puzzles. Okay, scrap that last one. But it keeps the game pretty varied. Sometimes you need to fight the monsters in a certain time limit and other times you need to sneak into the castle. There is one puzzle I liked so much I tried to program my own version of it. I succeeded but the project died.

The big trading

zelda-oracle-of-ages-oracle-of-seasons-3ds-screenshots-1There is a lovely side quest to the whole game with a reward. That reward really pays off the effort you need to do for it. This side quest is actually sort of a standard in the portable games of The Legend Of Zelda, because as far as I know, it nearly appeared in each portable TLOZ game.

There is a trade quest where you need to trade items with other characters. What the reward is, well I’ll leave that up to you guys to explore.

The gameplay is your standard Zelda gameplay. You get an item, you go to dungeon, get new item, defeat boss, get a heart container, puzzle to open next dungeon and repeat. Yup, nothing new there. And it still holds up till today. The game is still extremely fun and pulls you in. Pay attention when you play this game, the hours will fly by. And the game is quite lengthy too, so you won’t finish this game in one sitting.

Once you finished the game, you can link up the sister game Oracle of Seasons with a password. This way you pass over the names you gave to characters and you can see the true ending. This game will tease you with a “To Be Continued” screen at the end of the game.

The animation in this game is basic but it works. Actually, I take that back. The animation is pretty neat but not really for the impatient type of people. Burning a bush can take a while. And you aren’t able to skip certain animations like time travel. Time travel can be annoying when you go to close to a portal and you go in it by accident.

The music is, as it always in a Zelda game, short of amazing. It was blasting through my speakers the entire time I was writing this review. I even have the music on my harddrive and I listen to it here and there.

The game looks extremely well. The world looks colorful and the past looks aged. I really enjoy both world and the colors given to it. The level desgin is nicely implemented.

But is this game perfect?

Legend_of_Zelda,_The_-_Oracle_of_Ages

As a big Zelda fan, which I am, I would tell you: yes it is. But that wouldn’t make for a fair review, wouldn’t it? So, let’s rip this game a new— oh, nope, let’s not finish that sentence.

What I didn’t like about this game is how basic the sound effects sound to me. The sound effects are most likely all pulled from a library of other gameboy games and fail to impress me. I even have trouble with placing some of the sound effects in this game. (Yeah, I can be into Zelda too much)

Also the GBA shop is in my opinion a cool addition but truth to be told, it’s a cheap marketing trick to get people to buy a GBA. Well played Nintendo, well played.

Also, I wished that Maple appeared a bit more. She nearly never appears and I often sometimes just pass by the screen and miss her. It’s even more annoying when you miss her and you needed her for your trade quest.

To finish up this review, I’m going to mention something positive. The controls are extremely well done in this game. Apart from the jumping that can be a bit annoying…

Conclusion

The good:

+ Great music.

+ Decent story.

+ Great, long adventure.

+ Lovely puzzles.

+ Nice graphics.

The bad:

– Cheaty Maple.

– The cheap “buy GBA” promotion.

– Weaker sound effects.

Conclusion:

I had an hard time finding bad elements in this game. I went searching around what other reviewers had to say and they gave it all nearly a perfect score. This game is one of the best gameboy color games period. It’s even one of my favorite Zelda games. Actually the Oracle games are my favorite in the series. 

As a Zelda fan, you really owe yourself to play this game. And if you love adventure games, you need to play this game. Don’t wait, play it. But first let me know in the comments what you think of this game.

Score: 99/100

Review #002: Minecraft (PC) ~ Virtual Lego’s with a twist.

Notch-Details-Minecraft-Update-Logo

Link to the game’s site.

Under which smooth stone are you sleeping if you never heard about Minecraft or Lego? This game exploded on the indy game scene and it’s the big hit of today. With over 10 million copies sold on PC and mobile devices, many many positive reviews, this game has to be good. I play it myself nearly daily and went to MineCon last year. But wait a minute, am I actually playing a good game or a messy torturing? Let’s look at the blocky world of Minecraft and let’s check how good the game actually is. 

The graphics suck? No, they look retro!

minecraft-castle-ruinsMany rant video’s how to say that Minecraft sucks will tell you that the graphics suck. Or that it looks bad. The defenders say that the game looks retro. And while the game looks indeed retro, it gives more the impression of Lego blocks in pixel form to me.

Honestly, this game can’t be reviewed in a graphic style. Yes, you can comment on the vanilla graphical looks, but there are so many texture packs that can change the look of the game that it’s impossible to review the graphic side of the game. And I’m not counting the mods to make the game look like “HD” and all the shaders.

If I needed to rate the vanilla graphics, I would praise it. Since all recent games actually go for a realistic look, this game stands out with it’s blocky and pixelated graphics. The vanilla look has never really bored me and I actually barely play with a texture pack. Saves me the trouble of updating it whenever the game updates. Also, I am a retro gamer so I feel right at home in this blocky world.

I don’t get why people bash so much on the graphics of Minecraft. They give me the impression that whenever something doesn’t have proper fingers, the game looks ugly. The people that mostly hate Minecraft are the people who like shooter games. It’s silly how their reviews are always negative. They aren’t really objective and they rip the game apart. As the Minecraft addicts praise the game. Anyways, I’m repeating myself here. Let’s continue.

Goal of Minecraft

minecraft-creeper-590x349

Another big complaint is that the game’s storyline, wait, what story? Well, the thing is that in Minecraft you make the story yourself. The game is a sandbox game and has virtually no limitations. There isn’t even a goal in Minecraft, as there is never a real goal in simulation and sandbox games.

The developers can give the player a goal. Like in the Sims, you need to keep your Sims happy. In Minecraft, the main goal is Survival. If you play in the Survival Mode that is. You also have the creative mode where you get all the blocks handed to you.

In the survival mode, you could mine ores, make a farm, build a home, fight mobs… You can do a lot. Exploring the randomly generated caves is in my eyes a lot of fun. There are actually many things to do in Minecraft, too much to talk about in one review.

There are people on the internet who always make new games within Minecraft itself. Minecraft isn’t going to get boring quick. You have PvP games, Survival games, shooting games, CTF… With Minecraft, you can always make a goal or find a goal to spend countless hours within the game.

The combat is actually a limited part of the game. You can fight mobs, where I think the skeletons are at 1.5 a bit too strong for my liking, and you can fight players. Your only weapons are a sword and a bow. You can enchant your weapons with various enchants, but different weapons in vanilla would be welcome. Thankfully there are mods who add more weapons when you need it.

On the subject of mobs, there are way too few enemies to fight. You have your explosive dude, slender man copy, dead archer, spider, and zombie. Let’s not forget the mutated pigs, the silverfish, blazes and ghasts. Those are all enemies in Minecraft. You have two bosses in Minecraft, one is the Ender Dragon, the other is the Wither. Both give you a challenge if you don’t have good enchanted equipment. But with the enchanted equipment the battles can be a breeze. The Ender Dragon gives you loads of XP when killed and the Wither gives you a Wither Star to create beacons.

So much to talk about

minecraft-snapshot

It’s obvious that this review isn’t complete. And it never will be. The game keeps updating and changing. Which is a lovely thing? New blocks are added, new mobs, new ways to play the game and bug fixes. The game can be very buggy and very complex.

Things I haven’t talked about in this review are the different dimensions for example. There are at the version of writing this review only 3. The End is the worst of them all. Other things I haven’t talked about are Redstone, multiplayer, custom maps, skins, and various other elements.

I have been praising Minecraft for the whole review now, let’s get to the negative side of Minecraft.

The AI of passive mobs is sometimes a joke. The villagers are a great example. They give so many Youtube LP’ers so many trouble that some even rage when they need to work with it. Trying to get a passive animal to follow you is annoying and sometimes very irritating. If you go too many blocks down or when you are in a crowded area, the animal can lose you and just do what it wants.

Minecraft asks a lot from your computer. It’s coded in Java but on computers, with a bad graphics card the game can lag and often have frame drops. It’s playable but with tiny render distance, the game gets a whole lot less fun quickly.

Online, there are way too many hackers. It destroys the fun for people. Griefers, raiders and various other trolls are on servers and sometimes bullying people. It breaks the game and really makes some people sad. Myself included.

Installing mods was difficult, but with custom launchers, it’s a breeze. I’m not going to go in-depth about mods since otherwise, we will be here for six other reviews.

My final point in this game is about the music. It’s amazing. But it barely and rarely plays. It’s a bit sad if only an option existed where you can get the music playing non-stop.

Conclusion

The good:

+ Amazing freedom. 

+ Has so many things to can you make come back multiple times.

+ Very cheap: 20 bucks.

+ Pretty game.

+ Very customize-able.

The bad:

– Herobrine is still in the game.

– The AI of passive mobs needs to improve.

– The game can sometimes be very silent.

Results:

Like I already said, I can get talking about this game for ages. I try to keep my reviews around this length and I know that I have skipped over a lot of the game elements. The mods that expand or change the game, the various online servers, online mini-games, the big community… Or even the big yearly event MineCon. I went to MineCon in Paris last year, videos are on my Youtube channel. 

Let me know in the comments what you guys think about this review and Minecraft. I enjoy it, very much. But it’s not perfect. Thanks for the updates Mojang and the great game.

Score: 90/100

Rant #001: Pokémon Mystery Dungeon – Gates To Infinity (3DS): Cuts and Adds.

PMGTILink to the game’s site.

This isn’t a review, but a rant about something in this game. I played the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series a lot. I played all of them. I was so excited that I even got a 3DS in the hope that there would be a new entry in the series on the 3DS. And finally, we got one. But, now there is a major issue here. I’ll probably address this again in my review but I want to get this out of my system now. On my forum, there were a lot of discussions too, so I’ll add those complaints into this rant.

The adds.

The dungeons are way better now. You have parts outside and where you need to solve puzzles. It gives a unique twist to the game.

Now you can also farm berries. Yes, it takes some time though but it’s a neat addition. The Pokémon Paradise you are building is an amazing fun concept. It really gives the feeling of progression. But wait a minute, this is becoming more like a review instead of a rant. Whoops, my bad. Let’s go ranting.

The cuts

First of all, a big let down is that you can only do 1 mission at a time. Yes, no multiple missions for you. You need to give the request to the Pokémon to open the “Request Gate” and after you are finished, the day ends. I can agree this makes the game a bit more realistic but it really gets annoying because of one thing. The game taunts you with a list of 5 pages long missions. Each page has about 4 missions. And when you finish a mission, the list doesn’t shrink. Oh no, one mission gets added. Oh, the joy of “infinity.” 

pokemon-mystery-dungeon-gates-to-infinity-screenshot-04

I often find myself trying to save by sleeping. But guess what, you can save now everywhere except in the dungeons. But they removed the ability to save while sleeping. For people who got used to the original formula, don’t change up the way how you save, please. I forgot to save twice thanks to this. But this is a minor annoyance.

Nintendo, why did you got rid of the hunger system? It made the game more challenging and now without the hunger system, you can get through dungeons as if it was a breeze. Agreed, the hunger didn’t really bother you in dungeons that much but it gave something to think about when you forgot to buy food.

DLC? Seriously now? 1,5€ per extra dungeon. No thanks, I pass. This is a game where DLC is not really welcome. In my opinion, DLC should be for PC’s & consoles. Not handhelds. Let’s face it, how many credit cards do you have? Not much. But what annoys the crap out of me is the fact that the DLC is present as soon as you buy the game. DLC should come later as a sort of expansion. If this came later like when the game is nearly off store shelves, then I wouldn’t react this way.

This isn’t really a cut but a big annoyance. Which kinds of drugs have the Pokémon taken? They run extremely fast, nearly uncontrollable. And their dialogue boxes are so slow. And here is the best part. You can’t edit the speed of the dialogue boxes AND the running speed is already annoying on the normal speed. May the Lord help those who take fast speed.

Finish

I’m going to leave it here for this rant. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed. I’ll write a review of this game when I find the time and when I’m finished with this game. But for now, I’ll get playing.

I feel odd when playing this game. so many nice new things, yet those cuts really bother my game experience. Maybe I’m judging this game too early. It will be very interesting. See you guys at the next post!

Review #001: Tomb Raider – Survivor (PC) ~ Dark game about the sun.

Tomb Raider Survivor Box-Art.

Tomb Raider Survivor Box-Art.

Link to the official site. (For more details of this game).

“A famous explorer once said.” is the very first line that you hear in this game. The opening of this game is beautiful enough to keep your attention but is it good enough? This series got a reboot after the negative reception of Underworld, which is still in my eyes a darn good game. In this reboot, you play as, who else, Lara Croft. Yeah, only younger this time around. I realize that I’m late with this review and that many played this game already. But I have only recently gained interested again in reviewing. So, yeah. A messy introduction is messy.

“Not who we are.”

Hardcore Tomb Raider fans will actually feel right at home with this game. There are many tombs to explore and raid, all in a nice package of amazing graphics and the athletic Lara. But there is a difference this time around. You can’t go shooting all you want. Ammo isn’t unlimited.

Many people give this game the subtitle of “Survivor”. Since it’s a survival game. Well, partially. Okay, not at all. There is a mission to collect food, but that only gives XP. You can hunt on animals but all she does is slice them open. And before you tell me that it would be too “cruel” to animate her eating her prey; well, think again. This game is Dark, with a capital d. Some scenery isn’t for young eyes.  So I see a missed opportunity there.

The only survival part about this game is that you need to find ammo since, in the battles where you need to survive, you’ll quickly run out. You don’t have a health bar. Nope, this is replaced with the “Call Of Duty” style of health bars. Where the screen becomes redder when you take hits. What’s nice in this game is that the screen becomes gray when you are one hit away from death.

“Adventure found me.”

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The earliest design sketches that where posted featured a lot of content that didn’t make the final cut. So which adventure did Lara find? Like I said, the game looks amazing. The graphics are really neat. For the most part. Some areas of the game will feel a bit unpolished. It could have been my graphics card but some pits their textures were too big.

And the water isn’t all that great. Since sometimes it stops caring. I had several times that in the game the water texture was glitched up and looked more like boiling mud. Or that a 9-year-old discovered a distortion filter in Photoshop.

The game is said to have an open world. What an empty promise that is. The world is “open”. The game is extremely linear. And yes, even backtracking to old locations appears in this game. The level structure might be gone, or that is what you think at least. It’s simply replaced by areas.

In each area, you have several secrets, treasures, food plants… to find. This is lovely since it makes me coming back even after I finished the game. The replay value is high in this game. Sometimes you have even enemies who respawn so that you have something to shoot with your collected ammo.

The gameplay is pretty neat. Again, for the most part. Like many other reviewers will tell you, get a sturdy keyboard to play this game. Since there are a lot of quick-time events. They break the pace of the game often and are in some cutscenes rather unwelcome. I even think that in some of the cutscenes the quick time events are responsive. And in some, your timing needs to be better as in other cutscenes. Hrm, great to be consistent.

Bomberman Croft

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There is no area without an explosion. Really, the game is on a deserted island and there is sure a lot of bombs, explosive material and other stuff that can go boom around. The developers got a tad bit lazy and made the area where some cutscenes of the story is triggered unreachable after you passed it. Either by a ladder that broke down or a building that goes boom.

Even the very first puzzles require you to blow up parts of the cave where Lara is held. But why is she held there? A good question to introduce the part of the review where I talk about the story.

The story is mediocre at best but gets extremely “meh” at the end. The Tomb Raider games never really got me into the story. And this game is no different. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a unique story that I enjoyed but it didn’t leave an impression on me. I skip the cutscenes in my 2nd playthrough since I didn’t want to be bothered by the story and just play. Some RPG or big story-driven games can smell the plot twists from miles away.

But the disappointing story actually gave me hope of something else. Voice acting. I loved the voice acting in this game. It’s top-notch. The sound in this game is amazing. I really advise playing this game with a good headset. I played this game with a headset and it makes the game way more intense than with speakers. The music is amazing. I truly enjoyed the music in this game. Although, I felt that the silence of some areas was a nice choice too.

Steam

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For a long time, I didn’t have steam. But thanks to this game, I got an account. I am glad that I di since I got easy access to the updates for the game.

In the game, you can collect salvage to upgrade your weapons. It’s possible that you can finish the game without upgrading all your weapons.

You can also get new skills with skill points. You get a skill point when you have enough XP after killing enemies, emptying out tombs, being a meanie to a rabbit…

The animation in this game of the characters is amazing and well done. Even with my weak laptop, I had to put this game on low settings, I really saw that a lot of work went into this game’s animation. Some death scenes may be disturbing, but it adds to the game.

Before we go to the overview, a quick rant. Why do the bodies of the enemies despawn so quickly?

Oh yeah, multiplayer. I didn’t care much for it. I’m not that good in multiplayer. Sorry guys.

Overview

The good:

+ Good length.

+ Replay this game, sign me up.

+ Great voice acting.

+ Strong animation.

+ Amazing music & sound.

+ Good gameplay.

+ Visually an eye-candy.

The bad:

– Mediocre story.

– Some graphics tweaks are needed.

– The enemies may respawn but too few to be of any danger.

– Framerate issues.

Conclusion:

Do you need to buy this game? Why are you asking me this question? Yes! Yes, you should. It’s a great game and I found this game very enjoyable. The flaws of the game might get a bit in the game, and the multiplayer is decent.

But for the great gameplay and the amazing visuals, the game is worthy of a playthrough. Even if you have to sit through annoying quick-time events.

In any case, I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I enjoyed writing this. I hope to be able to welcome you in another article but until then, have a great rest of your day and take care!

Score: 80 / 100