Monday, July 22, 2013

The Last of Us

Very few games come out that makes us think what if this would happen, and could this happen. Also some of these games also make us think what would I/we do in this situation. Very few games really give you that feeling like The Last of Us does.

The Last of Us puts you in the center of a very real feeling survival situation, how you go about it is your choice. You could go around and try to kill everything in your path, or you can sneak and evade everything. it really depends on the situation and how comfortable you feel doing it.

One of the best components in this game is crafting. Crafting Shivs, Molotov's, etc. You can find some of these on the ground or hidden in corners, but you can also find the ingredients to make them, similarly to how you would find them if your were scavenging for items. You really have to look everywhere. Don't take it for granted that it doesn't seem that something is hiding around that corner because there just might be something over there.

The downside in my opinion is that the game's combat mechanic isn't as fluid as it should have been or even could have been.While it does feel and look super real like that is how one would expect a person to fight, I feel that it's a bit clunky in overwhelming areas.

I will also say that if you are clumsy and you alert just ONE zombie, this is where it gets really good. While the combat isn't what it could have been, the response time of the zombies that will be flooding it really give you a sense of HOLY CRAP, TIME TO RUN!!!!!

The zombie horde is always waiting, always watching and or listening, and if you alert them be prepared to fight a lot of zombies and in a very short amount of time. They did a good job with that, I love that consequence if you will where you alert zombie A, and zombies B - Z come rushing in.

Graphically this game is simply amazing, it really does have that survive feel to it that some games just don't quite have. The environment really feels alive, water moving, trees being blown by the wind, it really has the lifelike feel that all survival games should have.

The transitions from place to place has been well done, from grimy flooded sewers, to overgrown decaying cities, each area has it's own unique feel to it. The character details are also amazing, the lighting on both environments and characters have been executed tremendously. The clothes on the characters really seem well worn and not just a slightly used coat with some dust on it, but it really has that weathered worn out look.

Sounds in this game are key, literally the key to your survival. You might not be able to know where or if an enemy is around, but you can hear them. Sounds also plays a distinctive role when AI characters will tell you if they hear or see something. You have to keep your wits about you, if your too distracted by the visuals or the scope of your journey, then you will get hurt, or possibly killed.

The music in this game really also gives life to it as well. The music really shows it's emotional side and it fits this games emotion perfectly. A lot of times some games have great music but it doesn't fit what your playing, where you are, what your doing at that moment. It can kill a games momentum there for some people, but this game nails each one spot on.

I would go into the plot of a game by now, but I really don't want to give anything away. I will say that within the first few minutes of the game, it felt very real to me.

If you like zombie games, or at least survival games in general, then you would be doing yourself a great disservice by not getting this game, at least rent it and see if you want to buy it. This is a really well done game.

I give this game a 9 out of 10

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Eye of Judgment Review

Eye of Judgment Review:

It's not your traditional card game. Eye of Judgment is a card game build for the PS3 (A later version was ported tot he PSP) The game showed off what the Playstation Eye could do.

Eye of Judgment is played with real life cards, and the Playstation 3 by using the Playstation Eye to read the cards. For those of you who don't know, you might be asking yourself, why do I need the Playstation Eye to play a card game?

It's simple! It comes down to the fact that Eye of Judgment PS3 games, uses the camera to read the card, and then on your Television a 3D model of your creature emerges. It's a really cool concept, each card has a specific pattern on it, and the game is programed to read that pattern, the placement of the card (Facing North, South, East, or West) and displays a virtual rendition of that card.

The game is kind of played like a bunch of other card games, taking some parts from one or another but really giving it a nice unique feeling that can not be ignored.

The game is played on a 9 field board, 3x3 setup like this:

This is what the play mat looks like. The Camera symbol on each of the four sides shows where the camera can be set up, the two little symbols next to it are Discard pile, Library.

Just a basic rundown, I'm not going into full detail here:

Each person (This is a two player game) draws 5 cards from their 30 card deck (no more, no less) During each person's turn they get 2 mana at the start. This is used to activate cards, e.g. use a spell, place a creature, activate a creature, etc.

The goal of the game is to occupy 5 of the 9 tiles on the board before your opponent does. It's sounds simple, but it's really not.

There use to be 4 ways to “play a game” they are as follows:

  • Human vs Cpu
  • Cpu vs Cpu
  • Human vs Human (Offline on the same PS3)
  • Human vs Human (Online)

Online was discontinued about 3 years ago, so that ends online play.

One of the best things you co do for yourself though, (especially if your new to this game) is to put the Cpu on the highest skill setting and watch them battle it out. Starting off the only deck registered is the starter deck that you get. After that you can make and register more decks, which is great. You can buy a theme deck, use the Playstation Eye mode in deck builder so it reads the cards and adds it to the deck list, then have the cpu's battle it out to get an understanding of how the decks plays out.

The graphics are pretty good in my opinion. The field looks nice, there's animation in the field. The using of spells, or summoning creatures looks really well thought out. The 3D animations are also really good, the 3D animations give this an extra point in the graphics department because they are animated in the battles (kind of a given) but they are also animated when not doing anything, just waiting around, you can see them move. It gives it a nice realism, which is one thing that really raises the bar.

Story = NONE. No really none, the PSP version has a story part, but the PS3 version does not. I guess you could say that the main intro of the game is the story, but by itself, there is not story mode where you can go around and fight enemies.

Learning Curve = WTF??? This game does a good job of explaining the rules to you, but it would be better to watch a video on youtube since they go more in depth in letting you know the little ins and outs of this game. Even setting the CPU level to beginner for noobs will still pose a good challenge to you if you don't know what your doing. I learned more from youtube than I did from this game, so take my advice, as someone who's been playing card game for well over a decade now, I found learning easier online watching and listening to others. Also learn how to use the action cards, like turn end, action, status, cancel) these are special cards that don't go into the deck, but stay off to the side. Action card will let you attack with a specific creature that you play it down on. Status let you check the status of all cards on the field, turn end, well ends your turn. Cancel card, cancels the current event.

Music is well tricky, the music is really great on one hand, but sucks on the other. There's one song that plays more than anything else, unless you or your opponent gets put into check. While I do know that there is an OST for this game, I've only heard a few metal songs in the game, so like I said, it's good on one hand, but bad on the other.

Replayability = hardly any if you only have one deck, A.K.A. The starter deck. With more decks, you can try out more things and can even go against those decks with the CPU to see what they might tend to play, to give you a better understanding on how the deck works. Plus you can always play 2 players on the same PS3 and just have fun with a buddy!

The main problem that this game had was the launch price of it. The game came bundled (and still does on Amazon, only much cheaper) With the PS3 game, Playstation Eye camera, Play Mat, Camera Stand, (The camera has to be pointed down towards the mat in order to see all of the cards) Starter Deck, and a Booster Pack. All of this was launched at $59.99 which is your typical starting price point for Playstation 3 games, the only problem was the fact that the Playstation Eye was relatively new and people didn't really know what other things you could do with it.

The kill shot for this game though was Sony's statement that these cards could not be copied. Well it didn't take very long for that to be proven false as I believe the same year that this game came out, people were already proving that they could copy the cards. Sony's master plan failed because the Playstation Eye is not a high resolution camera, so your average Joe could take a scan of a card, print it off and use it, both offline and online. Due to this Wizards of the Coast, dropped the game (I believe after the second set) Hasbro took over the third and final set, and the game was discontinued I believe literally the next year after it's release. Another problem was when the second and third set were released, you have to buy, BUY Eye of Judgment DLC in order to use those cards. Call me crazy, but spending $100's of cards, physical cards, to then say well you can't use this unless you buy these DLC is Greedy 101 and was a contribution factor in the game's demise since who would buy the DLC to then be able to use the physical cards?

With all of that said though, Eye of Judgment had a very nice run as a card game, spanned three sets, 10 different starter decks, with many different booster packs.

While I wouldn't tell someone to make copies of cards and sell them online or sell them to a person face to face as real cards, (because that would be an evil bastard thing to do) I would say that if you want to play certain decks, or certain cards.


Set 1 cards, don't print them. They are still super easy and cheap to find, I believe the five theme decks are about $40.00 on amazon for all 5. Booster Packs can be had for relatively cheap.

However set 2 booster packs are at least double what set one is, and the theme decks for set 2 (if you can find them, amazon has only one of them for sale as of this review) are going for $65.00 and UP.

Set 3 cards are even more expensive still and I don't see the need for it TBH.

In the end I give this game a 9 out of 10

I feel that they took a chance with this game, and did very well with it. They could have done a better job with how the cards work, or maybe only have a few real cards for a deck and when the game say you get this card, you can choose (in the game) which card to use and place a card done that corresponds to it. Similarity to how the action cards work, but have 5 action creature cards, and some action spell cards. If they did the game that way, they there would have been loss of money from people printing off the cards. However with them doing the game this way, at least you can play without the PS3, granting you make your own Eye of Judgment field.

Remember, if you want to piss about, print the cards. If you want to scam people and sell them, don't it's wrong and not cool!

Friday, June 14, 2013

RetroN 5 E3 update

Hyperkin unveiled their RetroN 5 at E3 this year and let me tell you, it looks fantastic!

Update time for RetroN 5, but first for those who didn't catch my posts a few months back,

Please check it out, it seriously will change the face of retro gaming for the good.

Basic rundown (for those who don't want to read all of it) RetroN 5 will play, NES, SNES, Genesis, GB, GBC, GBA, Famicom, Super Famicom, Mega Drive. For those keeping track, that 9 different forms of media, spanning many years of awesome games. No longer will it be hindered by lockout chips of any kind, and sound is as good or better than original (not kidding)

We now got some pictures of this thing! HUZZA!!!!!!!!!!!

Rest are from
This little device packs a lot of retro goodness inside of it. and I can't wait for this tom come out.

My sources tell me that this should arrive by September and Hyperkin is still saying that this will be under $100


Monday, June 10, 2013

Sorry about the long absence + Mario Golf 64 Review

I've been working 6+ days a week lately and I really didn't have a lot of time for other things.

Now that everything is back on track in my life, it's time for some reviews!

First up this week is Mario Golf for the Nintendo 64:

Mario Golf 64 was the true first in line of the series. As of right now there are Mario Golf on the Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance (after this game was released) and Mario Golf on the Gamecube, and a 3DS version slated for release soon!

The reason why I said true first game is that there's Golf on the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) and NES Open Tournament Golf for the NES which both depicted Mario on the cover. However the name Mario Golf was first used on the Nintendo 64, and then on the Gameboy Color.

Mario Golf 64 was the first golf game I loved playing, it's addictive and it's hard, and it's super fun all rolled into one awesome package. The game had a variety of modes to play such as:
  • CLUB SLOTS - you use a slot
    machine to determine what clubs you can use on each hole. 2 to 4 players.
  • GET CHARACTER - This mode allows you play against a computer opponent. If you go against a character that you have not unlocked yet and you beat them in your match, you unlock them for use in the game! 1 player.
  • MATCH GAME - Just you vs a computer opponent, like Get Character, but you don't unlock them??? - 2 players.
  • RING SHOT - Rings hover above different courses in various patterns. Your goal is to hit the ball through all the rings AND sink it within par. For every completed hole, you earn a star.  For every four stars you earn, another course becomes accessible. Easier said than done, but for collesting 30 stars in any the 6 courses you unlock Donkey Kong for use in the game. 1 player.
  • SKINS MATCH - The player who has the fewest strokes on a hole wins skins.  When a tie occurs, the skins roll over to the next hole meaning that who ever wins the next hole wins twice as many skins. 2 to 4 players.
  • SPEED GOLF - The only competitor in this play mode is the clock.  You play 18 holes on any of the courses you've unlocked trying to minimize both your score AND in as little time as possible. 1 player.
  • STROKE - The winner is the player who has the best overall score (the lowest number of strokes) on the course. 1 to 4 players.
  • TOURNAMENT - You're in a tournament competing against 29 other contestants. The scoring can be a bit random, but (unless i'm mistaken) the better you do, the better the other people do as well. 1 player.

    BIRDIE BADGES - Birdie badges can only be awarded in Tournament play. For each Birdie you get on a hole (only 1 will/can be awarded for each hole) you get a Birdie Badge. You can unlock two characters:

    Maple       - Unlocked at 50 Birdie Badges
    Metal Mario - Unlocked at ALL 108 Birdie Badges
  • MINI-GOLF - Your putter is the only club you have to take on different courses shaped like numbers and letters of the alphabet. Seriously fun mode, I have spent way too many hours on this mode! 1 to 4 players.
  • TRAINING - This mode allows you to practice on any hole on any of the courses you have unlocked. 1 player.
As you can see, there are tons of modes inside of this game. There are many modes to keep you engrossed into something at all times and in doing so, not making this game feel overplayed and or boring, well unless you hate golf, then why are you even reading this review???

The different characters have different shot types and shot powers. There are broken down like this, Low, Standard, and High, with low being hindered by wind less, ans High, being severely hindered by wind strength. Further breakdown is: Straight, Fade, and Draw. Basically, if the ball will fly straight, more to the left, or to the right. The top characters will have either fade or draw, so it's better to get use to those characters early on.

The way you hit the ball is to press a button to start a power meter, if you get power all the way, and get it impact dead on perfect (after you select your power, the meter will fall down so you can select your impact) you will have a perfect shot.  On top of the normal shot, is a POWER Shot. A power shot is accessed by hitting the B button before you start your shot. You only get 6 Power shots before they are all gone, but if you get a perfect power and impact, then your power shot count does not go down and you can get infinite power shots if your good enough, so practice.

LIst of available courses to play on:

  • Toad Highlands
  • Koopa Park
  • Shy Guy Desert
  • Yoshi's Island
  • Boo Valley
  • Mario's Star
There are only 6 courses, which is the only drawback to me with this game. I would loved to have had a few more courses, but trust me, with these courses, and the amount of game modes that you can play, you really won't be missing out on anything too much.

In this end, this is my opinion a must have if you have a Nintendo 64, and while the gamecube one is good (it's a really good game) if doesn't have the Mini golf mode which I felt really bummed out about since it's easily the best mode (in my opinion) for more than one player.

I give this game a 9.2 out of 10

I feel that they could have added a few more characters to the lineup (there are 18 but I think they could have used a few more) and I think that 6 courses is the biggest problem with this game. 8 would have been really nice!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Resident Evil 6 Review

Before I jump into this game, I must make note that I have never finished a RE game, nor have I ever got far in one.

Resident Evil 6 is the next in the chapter in the fabled Resident Evil games, and while some people don't like this game, I love it.

The best thing for me, is that this doesn't really feel like a Resident Evil game (Like how the new Tomb Raider doesn't) and I like the new approach that these games are getting.

Gameplay can be good and bad at the same time, I really am not fond of the camera positioning at all! This was really a nuisance for when running with Leon and doing a shoulder tackle, because I didn't know where I was going to be.

I did notice a lot of cover shooting that I don't think that the previous titles had and I like that they added it. While some people might not like you, you don't have to use cover if you don't want to, so I don't see that as being a problem.

One thing that is annoying that they added are QTE (Quick Time Events) like if you are about to get hit and doge an enemy you can dodge at the right time you can counter (usually) kill them. I don't see the need for them at all, since most of the time you are moving so fast that you will probably mess it up.

There are many Chapters, well 5 for each character, Leon, Chris, Jake, Ada? and these are fairly long so it's not a really quick game. There is plenty to do with this game, and much fun to have with zombies.

The mechanics in general though feel clunky, I know I played a fair bit of RE4 and barely anything of 5, but they felt smoother. Did they just say, let's throw stuff at the wall and if it sticks, then we shall use it?

Another problem with this game is I am horrible at these games, I played RE 6 on normal? easy? and I had hardly any trouble. I know the earlier ones are harder than this by miles so did they bump the difficulty down for this game?

The graphics though are quite good, they did a good job with rendering and lighting and really giving the game a creepy feeling. I wish that the textures were a little less blured in certain areas, but this makes no real impact on gameplay. The transitions though from regular fighting to doing a nice QTE move is great, it's really smooth.

Sound in this game can be a bit weird, while it's good for some things, it's not good with everything. Case in point, the unmistakeable sound of a zombie(s) around is quite nice, it gives you the feeling of something being around but not quite telling you exactly where.

However the order sounds like over here, stay here, nice job, glad your here, etc are ANNOYING. Everytime you have to do a 2 person thing and your Ai buddy (co-op as well?) always says okay, I'm on it, etc. It goes on and on, I would have liked more variety. It's like your telling me that you pay them X amount to do VA but your only going to give this part like 3 lines that will get used over and over?


I'm not sure about playing with other people since I play games like this by myself so I can go at my own pace, and I must admit, they made this game for loser like me who suck at these games.

Yes I die a lot, yes I need to heal a lot, but look Ammo everywhere, herbs everywhere, it's kind of like the game holds your hand. While this is annoying for some I love the fact that it does because it will get more poeple like me to play this game.

in the end I give this game an 8.5 out of 10.

I think they need to do some better camera angles and fighting moves should be more intuitive and less QTE's because they can hinder game performance.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Tomb Raider Review

Tomb Raider is a reboot of the franchise, and while I don't normally agree with reboots or like them, this one surprised me because they did such a great job with the game in graphics, sounds, and gameplay.

The new Tomb Raider has Lara Croft on a ship called Endurance. They are on an expedition to find Himiko and her kingdom of Yamatai. After going back and fourth Lara suggests going into the treacherous Dragon’s Triangle, where she says is the best place for it to be. While Dr. James Whitman (famous archaeologist) doesn't agree with Lara, the rest of the crew side with Lara and sail into the Triangle.

This might not have been a good decision however, because they soon went into a horrific storm, that breaks the ship into two and crashes on an island. Now being separated from everyone else, Lara must now fight for survival and hopefully reunite with her stranded crew mates.

The fight for survival is going to be painful for some. They don't sugarcoat the many ways you can die in this game. There are some that hit my core like OMFG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There was one part (Not going to say what it is and ruin it for you) but I had to stop playing because it was disturbing to me. However, this is one of the many good things about this game. You see a more inept look at how the choices you make impact your chance of survival.

Ont op of the pretty good main story, you learn about not only the other characters stories, but also Lara's from collectibles you can collect like documents. Some are of your friends, and others are from people who have come to this island as well.

The progression of Lara crofts character of her adventure on the island is also so well done, there are no parts that I feel rushed and I don't feel that her character is too rushed either. That's not me saying that she isn't rushed because there is a point where you have to make a call, that call is a tough one for anyone to make and after you do it, you will start to see Lara's character progress, and probably along with yourself.

Aiming and firing in this game are very well done, I do like that there is no hip fire, you must actually aim and then fire. I know some pope might hate this, but it's not a shooter, it's an adventure game with shooter aspects.

That still boggles my mind, people are complaining that this game is too much like a shooter and that the original never was.

Ummm... people, what's really different here? Yes, they do have you rely more on the shooting part, but there has been shooting in Tomb Raider before so what's the real problem?

I love that have have fast travel points, so if you missed something or want to just explore more you can travel back to anywhere there is a fast travel camp. This is really good for finding collectibles like GPS Caches, Relics, Documents. One thing that I do like about finding these and don't is how easy they are to find. Tome Raider has a feature (can't remember the name like Survival Instincts or something like that) where you hit the trigger button (PS3 L2, 360 ???) and everything goes Black and White and hidden things like collectibles and challenges or enemies glow. Enemies and animals will glow and it's really good to see them hiding or if they are through the trees and normally you wouldn't see them. Bad part about this? If you hit L2 and you are looking North (just to pick a direction) anything West, South and East of you (within the range of the effect) will be visible. So you really can just run around (or walk if you want) hitting L2 and when it wears off, do it again.

I think that Salvage should have been used to pay for this ability (I'll get to salvage in a moment) like 5 Salvage for every use, and not the infinite use that it is now.

Salvage is what you use to upgrade your weapons, you can find salvage everywhere. You can find it in boxes, (both crate style and lid style) and you can find them in lockers as well. You can even kill an enemy or an animals and get salvage that way.

Tomb Raider also employes a skill tree if you will. Every time you level up you earn a skill point that you can use for whatever you want. One of the best ones (in my opinion) is arrow retrieval so when you take anything down, when you go over to them you can get your arrow back.

One other thing to note is that there are 7 "Hidden" Tombs, I won't go into what I really want to say about these Tombs and ruin it for you, but each tomb has a Camp, and puzzle that you must complete and a nice reward at the end.

One thing I will say is that you should explore them all, because three Tombs have a special weapon upgrade that you might want to get.

That brings me up to one of the best things about this game, upgrading your weapons. Each weapon has an upgrade, or upgrades. All of them (sans the Tomb one) are found randomly in crates, so make sure you go into every area and collect everything you can. These will also open up more things for you to customize, like upgrading your Bow's fire rate, or how much damage it can do, etc.

The visuals that Crystal Dynamics have done on this game are simply amazing. They are really freaking good. I think that they have pushed the envelope with this game. The different environments are fantastic, the shadows and light refractions are stunning, heck even the motion cap. was so well done that this game has a certain fluidity to it.

I mean, look at this freaking game:

(Original link -

It's beautiful!!!

The sounds in this game are unparalleled. From the music which changes tempo depending on your situations and the eerily quiet parts, to the sounds of chaos all around, CD did a great job with it. one of the best things is that you can eavesdrop on your enemies and you can tell (visually and audibly) if they are going to change positions so you might get a clear silent shot on them.

In the end, if you like the the new look and feel to the game and want to play a game that is unlike anything else, then simply get this game, it really is a classic and will definitely be one of my favorite games I've ever bought and one of the best purchases I’ve ever made.

I give this game a 9.8 out of 10

My only gripe about this game are the lack of Tombs, I would have loved more in the game, but that's just me.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Secret of Mana Review:

Secret of Mana is the second game in the Seiken Densetsu series.
Unlike other RPG's of the time, it was an active-time RPG, that
had real time battles.

This game was revolutionary, and while yes other games did have
real-time battles, none were like this at all. However, one thing
not a lot of them had (at least from what I can remember) this
game had a 3 character party, no big deal right?


This game can be played by you, and two of your friends at the
same time, on the same cartridge!

Yep, you heard me correct You need the game, three controllers and
one of the SNES multitap devices and you and two other people can
play the game at the same time. Each person controlling a
character, and each character (and person) able to do whatever
they want to, when they want to. You want to use an item while
they heal or Vice versa? Go right ahead!

That was one of the best things about this game, and for some
stupid reason, not a lot of games have done this.

The story of the game is, (you are a boy living in this village)
you are out playing like you do any other day. Next thing you
know, you hear a voice coming from a waterfall, and notice that
there's a sword in a rock there. You decide what could possibly

By the way, that's the worse thing to ever say, trust me! Karma
will run you ovah!!!!!!!!!!

Once you do this though, you have since awakened monsters, that
are ravaging different places, and in doing so have you hated by
the village that you would live in for removing the sword, and
ultimately kicked out of it. Now you are on your own, but on a
mission to save the world.

I could go on, but I'd rather not spoil anything in case people
have yet to play, see or let alone hear about this game.

I said before that there are three characters, and each of them
have their abilities and flair to them. You have the boy, a
warrior class, able to learn lots of different weapons.

There is the girl (who I call the white magic class) she is
useful for healing and defense. Then sprite, who uses black
magic, damaging magic onto foes.

You can play by yourself, and have the AI take control of the
other two characters. however you are really missing out on a lot
of fun when you don't have people to play this game with you.

The "menu" system really reminds me of how Dishonored has their
weapon/magic wheel menu. I love the whole circle menu in my
opinion, I find that it's faster and easier since you can really
move around in the wheel, vs a traditional menu.

Each magic and each weapon have a skill level attached to them,
the higher the skill, the better the item(s) magic spell(s)

For weapons, you can charge up a powerful attack, however please
keep in mind, that for each level that you can charge your attack,
it takes longer to charge it up. So a level 1 charge is nothing,
but a level 5, 6, y, etc. will take longer and leave your
vulnerable to an open attack.

The graphics in the game, while not as good as other games, feels
more inviting then the rest, it's something you hardly see
anymore, sans Ni No Kuni. I guess that doesn't surprise me, and
shouldn't surprise you, since some of Secret of mana's graphics
looks like they were (at least to me) hand drawn/painted. Which,
even if it wasn't and given the illusion of that, makes it really
more inviting to play a game like this. It makes me want to play a
game like that more since it shows how much they care, not only
about their games, but about their consumers as well.

The sounds and music fits the style of the game, but the sound
effects could have been a bit better. First things first, the
music describes the game perfectly, it really melds well with the locales that you are in, when you hear the music.

The sound effects on the other hand, while not bad, are not great either. They are in a sort of happy medium. Some of the sound effects get repetitively, and I really don't know why they didn't take a little bit more time to work on he sound effects, especially since it's on the SNES and there were many games with better effects.

In the end, this game deserves all the credit that it gets and more. Well it should get more since I believe it was translated in a little bit more than a month, and they did a great job in doing so.

I highly recommend this game to people who want to enjoy a nice adventure with either nobody, or with up to two of your friends.

I give this game a 9.8 out of 10

I really feel that the sound effects, being so limited and that there are quite a few dry spots in the story (ones that I won't spoil for you :P) hurt this game from a perfect score.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


I also called this my Swine Flu Deck.

Before I continue I need to tell you that this deck is easily $120.00+ SO keep that in mind. I will offer some budget varients as well (mainly the ones I used)

Pox is a special card, it can do magically things, like take a third of people's life, cards in hand, creatures in play, and lands in play (rounded down) for 3 black mana.

This effects you too, some remember a Pox deck can help you but if your not careful it can also hurt you too!

Also side note, please use a calculator, you might be good with math, (I can figure out 1/3 loss rounded down), but some poeple I faced couldn't so I used a calculator to make sure that there is no confusion when running this deck.

First let me start of by saying that there are many different types of Pox decks, and many different color schemes that you could go with.

I.e. Crucible Pox (By far my favorite and the one I used) Contamination Pox (Great Pox varient, but I could never see how it could outlast the crucible pox) Mono Black, Black/White, Black/Green Pox.

I preferr Mono Black Pox since it's the easiest and in my opinion the deadliest since you should always have something to do with a Mono Black Pox and don't have to wait for the perfect land to come along.

I kept going with a decklist but then I remembered this link:

That link is to the Pox Primer on mtgsalvations, you will find a whole hosts of cards that can be used in decks, and if you click on one of the card links, you will even see what the prices for those cards are.

I would recommend making a Pox deck, but starting off with a budget version, maybe have one Crucible and then slowly build it up to 2 or three.

False Hope Deck

Well this deck has been know my many names, False Hope, False Promiss, and (mystery)

The name is not mystery, but it will be revealed once I tell you the trump card of this deck.

False Hope starts off by giving your opponent a false sense of security, mostly because this deck wants your opponent to gain life.

Yes you heard me, with this deck you could gain life but the ultimate idea of this deck is so you force your opponent(s) to gain life.

Why you ask? Elementary dear Watson!

First however, let's go through the decklist rundown:

Lands 18:

4x Plains
2x Secluded Steppe
6x Swamp
6x Forest

White 8:

3x Life Burst
3x Wall of Shards
2x Beacon of Immortality

Black 12:

4x False Cure (The kill card of thi deck)
4x Shred Memory
2x Needlebite Trap
2x Sign in Blood

Green 14:

4x Skyshroud Cutter
4x Reverent Silence
4x Invigorate
2x Regrowth

Multicolored 6:

3x Mortify
3x Watchwolf

Artifact 2:

2x Isochron Scepter

THe main kill of this deck is False Cure. False Cure states:

"Until end of turn, whenever a player gains life, that player loses 2 life for each one life gained."

This means if you gain 4 life, you gain 4 life then lose 8 life.

Or Instead of gaining X life, you lose X life instead.

The best thing about this deck, is that False Cure stacks.

Meaning if you have two False Cure's active (it is in instant) for each 1 point of life a player gains, that player loses 3 life.

3 False Cure = 1 point of life gained, player x loses 5 life.
4 False Cure = 1 point of life gained, player x loses 7 life.

It's a very powerful card, if you can play it right, and that's where this deck comes into play.

There are many cards in this deck that can make a person gain life, even cards that you don't have to pay a mana cost for.

These cards are the following:

Skyshroud Cutter - If you gain a forest (Forest card in play) you may have each other player gain 5 life instead of playing Skyshroud's Mana Cost. 2/2 Creature.

Reverent Silence - If you control a forest, you may have each other player gain 6 life instead of paying Reverent Silence's Mana Cost. Destroy all Enchantments.

Invigorate - If you control a forest, you may have an opponent gain 3 life instead of paying Invigorate's Mana Cost. Target Creature get's +4/+4 until end of turn.

Those few cards are really helpful with killing anybody. Especially the first two since they make all other opponents gain life.

One thing to note, you can use Reverent Silnce, and Invigorate even if there are no cards in play that they can target. This is because the card is played, then you look for a target(s). So if there are no enchantments in play, reverent silnce will still trigger, but since nothing in play is elligble to be destroy, nothing is done. The card is still played, it just has no effect.

The best way to run this deck is as follows:

Play Isochron Scepter (2 of any mana) when it comes into play remove an Instant card with CMC (Converted mana cost) of 2 or less in your hand from the game. The removed card is imprinted onto Isochron Scepter.

Tap 2 of any mana, tap Isochron Scepter. You may copy the imprinted card and play the copy without paying it's mana cost.

I know this sounds stupid since your still paying 2, but think again. YOu can play 2 of anything. SO if you have more plains then swamp and you imprinted False Cure (2 Black mana cost instant) you can save those black mana for something else more useful.

The ultimate combo of this deck is Beacon of Immortality + False Cure.

This is a one-hit kill combo. Beacon of Immortality (5 Generic 1 White mana) Double target player's life total. Shuffle Beacon of Immortality into it's owner's library.

That is an instant kill combo, because even if they try to do anything (like a counter) you still have plenty of ways to kill them.

Most of my matchups with this deck are very positive with Beacon since they are trying to counter false cure or other cards, and ultimatly wasting counters on essentially decoys in the grand scheme of this deck.

This is a very good "Controlish" deck since you are controlling life points.

Gaea's Blessing Deck

This is my version, I will add budget versions of the more expensive cards in it.

Lands 17:

6x Plains
4x Island
2x Forest
4x Tropical Island - can be replaced for more forest and island
1x Seaside Citadel

White 6:

4x Wrath of God
2x Island Sanctuary

Blue 24:

4x Ponder
4x Sage Owl
4x Counterspell
4x Fact or Fiction
4x Force of Will
2x Dreamborn Muse
1x Frozen Aether
1x Jace, The Mind Sculptor

Green 3:

2x Gaea's Blessing
1x Azusa, Lost But Seeking

Artifacts 10:

4x Howling Mine - Great for getting your cards faster
4x Mesmeric Orb - THE KILL CARD
1x Crucible of Worlds
1x Chrome Mox

Tropical Island - can be replaced for more forest and island

Wrath of God - Helpful against creature heavy decks

Island Sanctuary - great against non flyers/non insland walk creatures, has helped me more times than I can count!

Sage Owl - Goes great with Jace, The Mind Sculptor

Fact or Fiction - Perfect for Gaea's Blessing

Force of Will - Perfect card for this deck, can be replaced by daze or another counter card, like mana leak

Jace, The Mind Sculptor - Excellent card, can look at the top card of your opponent's library and put it on the bottom for +2, can get a free brainstorm for 0, for -1 return target creature card to owner's hand, and for -12 can exile all cards from target players library and turn their hand into their library. This is an expensive card, but it's so freaking worth it!

Dreamborn Muse - Part one of the three part milling machine, for each card in a persons hand at the beginning of their upkeep. The take a card from their library and it goes into their graveyard. SO if they have 7 cards in their hand, then 7 cards go from their library into the graveyard.

Gaea's Blessing - The meat and potatoes of this deck, for one colorless and one green you can Shuffle up to three cards (you can still use this if target players graveyard has no cards in it, since it says up to) in a target player's graveyard, into their library and draw a card. What seperatres this card though is this:

If Gaea's Blessing is put into your graveyard from your library (milling, Fact or Fiction, etc) shuffle your graveyard into your library.

So you get milled and your opponent(s) and you come out fine.

Fact or Fiction is perfect for this because you reveal the top 5 cards of your library, target person makes 2 piles from those cards. You take one pile and put it into your hand, and the other goes into your graveyard. Since Fact or Fiction is not making you draw, but reveal and then put into your graveyard, if Gaea's Blessing is in one of those piles then GB triggers and you get to shuffle.

Any card that makes you look at or reveal (not draw) and put at least one card in your GY, then Gaea's Blessing's ability will trigger.

Azusa, Lost But Seeking - Legendary creature that lets you play two additional lands on each of your turns, so if you had three lands in your hand, you can play all three as long as that creature is out!

Mesmeric Orb - Is really the kill card. When it's out, whenever anyone untaps a permenant (for whatever reason, even during the untap step) that person puts a card from their library into their graveyard. Yep, for each card. So if they tapped four mana, then when they untap, they have to mill four cards.

This effect stacks, for each Orb in play, so four orbs, four mana = 16 cards going buh-bye.

Crucible of Worlds and Chrome Mox, are only there as insurance. Chrome Mox is useless later in the game since everything you have will go from GY to your library and if it comes out later then it's useless. Same for Curcible of Worlds, however foreach land in your graveyard (with Azusa out) you can play three lands so one in hand and two from GY. Again if it doesn't come out until later, then it is of no realy use.

Retro Tuesday Postponed for today

Hijacking my own blog to put up some magic the gathering decks for someone on playfire.

WIll add review tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Update + Retro Tuesday Surprise

So I haven't posted anything since last week, I had to have a tooth removed on Wednesday, but it was so badly infected that after 5 shots of Novocaine I was still feeling the needles, so I had to take a course of antibiotics.

I just had the tooth removed yesterday so all is good.

Okay, info from Midwest Gaming Classic. It was a blast, I bought a bunch of stuff, (lol, big surprise there) and I played a lot of great games and saw some amazing systems.

The following is the surprise, It's a console that plays a lot of great classic games

I was there for Hyperkin's newest creation the RetroN 5. Hyperkin is known for building great systems to play your favorite classic games. The RetroN 3 which plays NES, SNES, and Genesis.

They were going to announce the RetroN 4 but they changed it, the skipped the 4 and went right into the 5 and HOLY CRAP!!!!!!!!!!! I WANT THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!

The RetroN 5 plays:


Wait, that's not all. The RetroN 5 also plays:

Super Famicom

and finally

Mega Drive.

 It also looks like no NTSC nor PAL games will lockout at all. You don't have to worry about CIC lockout chips or FX chips.

The system will have and utilize wireless controllers (their own)

However if you want to be more "Classic" then just use the side ports of the system, the include the following:


The wireless controller (Pictured Below) shows off the features that it will have:

Home Button for syncing controller(s) to system, manus, etc.

marco buttons for customing, 6 button config in the style of the genesis, LED Buttons alert you of what player you are.

The RetroN 5 will utilize a save state feature that lots of emulators have, but not systems like this.

also the RetroN 5 will use shaders to emulate the picture in 720P for use with HD tv's

Pictured below shows RetroN 5 and SNES 300% Zoom

 Sound quality has also been seriously improved, most systems (in order to save memory) will use sound of inferior quality to try to emulate it as best as they could, which is often horrible.

Not so with the RetroN 5, here's a sample of their new system's sound emulation:!

it's embedded and unlisted so you have to use that link.

You can also reassign buttons, as shown below in the new GUI of the RetroN 5:

You can also speed up or slow down your games, this next part is taken from their website:

"The RetroN 5 will allow for manual and passive overclocking, giving the users the ability to speed up or slow down their games as they see fit. This option will be available on our GUI, and users will have the ability to access this at any time during gameplay by utilizing the “Home” button on the controller. You will also be able to utilize this function by programming the Macro buttons on the wireless controller as well."

In the end, this looks like it could be the absolute best thing that any Retro Gamer (like myself) could hope for.

It has the ability to not only play NES, SNES and Genesis, but also Famicom, Super Famicom, Mega Drive, GB/GBC and GBA games. It also has the best sound quality out of them all, it also has support for four wireless controllers and even has the ports for the classic NES, SNES, and Genesis controllers.

The system I use now is the RetroDuo, which is awesome, but I want something more. I want something with more features, more controller ports, and will let me play every game without worrying about Lockout Chips.

The RetroN 5 looks like this could be the best thing that there ever was and I for sure am getting one.

When more information comes out I will definitely remark about it on future posts!

I can't give this a score just yet since I don't have it.

make no mistake about it though, I will buy this and I will also be buying gmames that had lockout chips that plagued other like the RetroDuo and I will give this a test.

Hopefully it lives up to what they claim! If they do, then I will damn sure tell everyone to get one!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Blog update + reviews for Retro Tuesday

This has been a hard week for me, so I am making sure that I don't miss this week's Retro Tuesday. I will be posting another classic review tomorrow.

Also MGC (Midwest Gaming Classic) is this Saturday

Tetris, the game that really put puzzle games on the map. You can say Tetris to almost anyone and they will know what you're talking about.

Tetris is an icon, it has yet to have any game be able to contend with it, it's unsurpassed.

The greatest thing about this game is that it's hard and easy, but it's always fun. It's a really addicting game since games don't take much longer than maybe 30 minutes at the most.

How can any puzzle game be simpler than Tetris? There are what seven pieces of different shapes, that must be placed and form a line connecting from one end of the board, to the other.

It sounds simple, but it can be very hard on later levels.

Those are the pieces that you must use (in no particular order) to create as many lines as you can. If you can make more than one line at a time, you get more points. You get points for bringing pieces from the top of the field, to the bottom (you don't get points if the pieces use the level's gravity speed to bring them down, you must pull them down) The amount of lines that you can make up to (for using the long piece on the bottom right of that picture) one line, two lines, three lines, and finally four lines. If you can make four lines at once, this is called a Tetris. This is the most point making line that you can achieve.

It's really hard to come up with one reason that it's so popular, I guess if I had to pick one reason it would be that it's simple. It's not an overly complicated game, it doesn't have a bunch of features that other puzzle games have that might hinder the quality or the tempo of the game.

In the end, Tetris is a game that can transcend time because it's something that everyone, young old, everyone can relate to and experience together because it doesn't try to be one thing or another. Tetris is something that people should follow in their lifestyle and just be themselves.

I give this game a 10 out of 10

Tetris is the best puzzle game, and even though it has been remade since it came out, it still keeps the core value of the game and while some variants might have new game modes, the classic classic mode is still the best and is still the go to mode for everyone.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Skyrim Review

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is the fifth installment in the popular Elder Scrolls series. The Elder Scrolls game type is ARPG (Action Role-Playing Game.

One of the best things about these series is the open world aspect. You want to go here? Go ahead! Now you want to go all the way over there? No problem. You are not limited by anything except for how big the game's world is.

The game takes place on the continent of Tamriel in the providence of Skyrim. I can't go much into the story (I've only just started playing the game) you are (??? - You can choose between various races that all come from various places) who is slated to be executed by the Imperials when all of a sudden a Dragon attacks. As chaos ensues all around, you escape (you have a choice as to who you escape with between two people) and soon you will be on your own while trying to avoid dangerous and powerful foes.

While yes there probably is a real story (Like I said I have only begun) since Skyrim is a true Open world Action RPG that means that even though there is a "fixed" story, you can still do whatever you want. You want to only use your time to attack civilians, go right ahead, you want to kill bunnies have at it (There is a stat for how many bunnies you ahve slaughtered) you want to kill a chicken?????

DON'T DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You can kill other things, just don't kill those chickens!

Graphics in this game are simply amazing, from character models to the foliage, to dungeons, caves, towns, etc. There are very few RPG's that can compete with Skyrim in terms of graphics. Sounds and more importantly music in this game is also one of the greatest you will ever find. I actually find myslef attracted to the sound that plays while you choose to srat a game, continue, load, etc.

The sound effects of your weapons being both sheathed and unsheathed, your bows firing, swords hitting enemies, rocks, etc. are also one of the best I have ever experienced. Don't even get me started on how much I love the sound of my fire spell blasting away at things, <3

Now onto problems with this game. First thing is I'm playing with a PS3 and this is what I've noticed.

Random game freeze, within the first 30 minutes of the game, it just froze. Now you might say that might not be a problem, remember that this game has come from Bethesda, who are infamous with their games freezing, glitching,. lagging, bugging out on the PS3.

Also interestingly enough, I have noticed what appears to be a frame rate issue with this game. Some of you may wonder how do I know this since you can't get a true frame rate with anything other than a PC? Simple, I've played way too many games to know when a game is lagging and it's mostly because of the graphics in that area causing a drop in frame rate. I would think that they could do a better job with this but then there's another problem.

Bethesda sucks for PS3 users, quite simply they don't know what a PS3 is. This is both a joke and true at the same time. Bethesda has said that they've never touched a PS3 as far as making a game is concerned. They used an outsourcing company to port the game over to the PS3. Which is why Skyrim DLC was never released on the PS3 until last month when the first three arrived.

The outsourcing company couldn't port it over for the PS3 so they had to completely re-make the DLC for it to work on the system.

Oh boy and they will probably do stuff with the PS4?

GAMING PC FOR THESE GAMES NAOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The gameplay mechanics are pretty solid though, I would love a wheel similar to Dishonored's system. I only hope that the next game will have this wheel, this wheel is really nice. I would also love to see (stealing something from Call of Duty here) custom class setups, but have it limited to weapons and magic, and shouts only. Like oh I'm going to go against this type of enemy, let me select this setup. it's a bit annoying to use the regular menu and even the favorites menu can be a bit of a bother. However they are on the right track.

I would also like to see the carry weight restrictions to be able to grow higher than they can. Sometimes this can be annoying when your in certain places like a city and if you drop weapons, guards will give you a warning at first. I'm not sure when the second or more times will cause but I'd rather not find out.

In the end, this is a great open world ARPG with lot's of stuff to do, like killing wolves, giants, spiders, giant spiders, etc. This might not be the game for everyone so before you play this, please check out the other games in the series like ES IV Oblivion (Which is $19.99 brand new GotY edition at gamestop, well it was when I bought it 3 months ago)

I give this a 9.2 out of 10

I feel that the constant frame drops and somewhat annoying equipment menu to be a hindrance, however if it causes less of a problem for me I might have to re-write this review to reflect on it.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

New Feature - Retro Tuesday - Tetris Attack Review

In honor of the Midwest Gaming Classic (which is March 23rd - 24th 2013) and I'll be going to, I hacve created a new feature called Retro Tuesday.

Every Tuesday I'll be reviews a classic game, nothing newer than PS2, but more reviews will be pre PS2.

First up is a SNES Puzzle game called Tetris Attack.

Ah Tetris, the game that started the puzzle game crazy. It's addictive and challenging. There have been ripoffs, and spinoffs, but this is (In my opinion) neither. This is it's own game, it has it's own feel, and here's why.

Tetris Attack has nothing to do with Tetris at all, it's not about shapes being fit and making lines. It's about sliding pieces around a field and trying to match 3+.

Sounds like a boring game right? WRONG!!!!!!!!!! While other sliding puzzle games are inherently boring (try to prove me wrong, I dare you!) this is completely different due to a few things.

#1. It has characters that (If you've been playing Nintenod games you would know and connect to)
#2. It's a hard game, it can be easy, but it can also be BRUTAL
#3. It's a great game to play with and against your friends.

Firt off, here is a picture of Tetris Attack:

Now, here is a picture of a game called Panel De Pon:

Tetris Attack is based off a Japanese Puzzle game called Panel De Pon, everything from Tetris Attack was taken from this (sans characters) the mechanics, the story (with slight alterations) EVERYTHING.

You may be asking, so why does this game have the title Tetris?


How many people (outside of japan) buy a game called Panel De Pon? Now I know that poeple would buy it, now ask yourself this, how many people WILL buy any game with Tetris in it's title?

Answer is a lot! Tetris Attack, is Panel De Pon with some of Nintendo's  infamous characters, and a slightly changed story. For the most part the mechanics stayed unchanged, except for slight argumentation.

All of this aside, forgetting that fact that it's a ripoff of Panel De Pon (Similar to what Super Mario Bros. 2 did with Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic) removing all of that from your mind, it's still a really amazing game.

This is a crash course, err...let's go to youtube instead!

As you see, you must match 3+ pieces in either horizontal or vertical position. The object is to get a combo (4+ pieces matched up) or make a chain, whereby you match three, then (if there are any) pieces on top of them fall down and match with the any below, you get a chain.

The game takes some time to fisrt pick and and be able to hold your own on the lower difficulties. However, once you progress and get farther in not only the level (there is a VS mode) but also in the difficulty you select.

Game modes ar as followed:


Endless - No time limit, it's just you vs the puzzle (Well not truly endless, score that ends the game is 99,999)

Time Trial - How many points can you score in 2 minutes.

Puzzle Mode - Complete the Tetris Attack puzzle with the amount of moves that allow you to make

Stage Clear Mode - Clear all blocks until you are under the Stage Clear Line.

VS - You (Yoshi) must battle and defeat enemies to save your friends. More levels unlock when you play harder difficulties.


Time Trial - You both play for 2 minutes at the same time. See who gets more points. Great for either playing with beginners or being a beginner yourself.

VS Mode - You and your friend play and see who can take the other out by making chains, combos, etc. Really addictive and a fun game to play. Recommended to play with people on same level as you, since better players can beat you before you know what happened.

One of the best things is that you don't need a friend for VS mode. You can play with the Computer.



CPU levels go from level 1 to Level 7. Obviously the lower, the easier and the higher, the harder.

This is great, best of both worlds, you don't need anybody to get good at the game, you can use the bots.

This is one of my favorite games ever, I've wasted well over 100 hours in this game.

I give this game a 9.9 out of 10

I think that they could have made the chains go past 13 instead of ? chains that give you like no points at all, well hardly at all)

Well that wraps up this first review of Retro Tuesday, stay tuned for more reviews and a review of the MGC on the 24th where I'll detail everything I saw.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Why Sony hates us PS3 users - Playstation 4 review update

Okay so I've been doing some research and it runs out that Sony hates us PS3 users, and here's why:

Playstation 4 is NOT backwards compatible with PS3 games - Also reports are that no PS1 nor PS2 compatibility either!

Playstation 4 is NOT compatible with ANY PSN GAMES EITHER

I have tons of PSN games, I have a good amount of PS3 games, this means that Sony will only have the PS4 do PS4 things.

Also if you want to re-buy your games that you already opwn on a different format. The Playstation 4 won't even support your save files either.

WTF is up with this SONY???

Who came up with this idead and why did you jump on it like nobody's business?

I think this Sony fan, might stick with what I got, I'll give it some time like a year or so to see how the system pans out, but right now I'll stick with my PS3 and PC.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Playstation 4 is it worth it right away

This is just a small update for this blog. As many of you may know, Sony has unveiled the PLaystation 4 and is scheduled to hit stores at the end of this year, but I ask is it worth it.

The new PS4 can do impressive things, but is it all just fluff? YES!!!

Their big thing was trying to get emotion, same thing they did when they unveiled the PS3, heck what poeple really don't know is that the PS3 can do a lot fo the graphics that the PS4 can do but it might be easier and cheaper on the PS4, which is why you hardly see the tru power of the system.

The new controller looks horrible, sorry but it looks bad. The list of games shone is nice, but I don't think that these will be launch games, some might but not all of them.

You will see some good games and a bunch of weak "filler" games like other console launches.

The one reason why I won't buy one this year, it isn't cost. Sony never said anything about cost but it is rumored to be $430.00 - $530.00. That's not my problem.

My problem is that every system to come out has had problems, either with a huge shortage (Wii when released, no one was getting them and Nintendo World had a hard time getting them and holding on to them) RROD for the 360 which was Microsoft's fault saying this is the case, cram all of that into this. Sony PS3 YLOD due to poor solder choices.

Is it worth the risk of $430 - 530 to have something probably break on you? It's not to me, I will be buying another PS3 this year and will get a PS4 next year, but I will not buy one any time soon after the inital launch due to how many problems the other systems (including Sony systems) have had.

It's just not worth the risk!

One a side note however, the system does look great and I hope that games that should have been out on PS3 will finally see the light of day again. I'm looking at you Ico and your Last Guardian, you punks!!!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch Review

Ni No Kuni is an RPG from the famed Level 5, they have done excellent work on titles such as:

Dark Cloud, Rogue Galaxy, Dragon Quest VIII, Professor Layton and the Curious Village, White Knight Chronicles, and many others.

They know how to put together a very excellent RPG and NNK is no different.

The Story of Ni No Kuni is you play a Oliver, a boy who since losing his mother will travel to a far away place (another world) in order to save that world and hopefully bring his mother back. Along the way you gain the friends and develop Oliver both in a physical sense and on an emotional sense with learning to deal with his loss. You will learn how both world are connected, they are parallel worlds and you can travel back and fourth between them.

This game reminds me of Chrono Cross in the sense that you can see how peoples lives on the parallel worlds are different but connected all at the same time.

There are many mechanics in this game, spells like fireball, healing magic, spring locks, etc. You also get to micromanage yourself and all of your followers/helpers, you learn about the history of the world that you are in through pages of your wizardry book that you obtain from the different places that you travel to.

The graphics in Ni No Kuni is not what you would expect from normal RPG's. They don't look über realistic, they are like Dragon Quest VIII only more advanced and better. Level 5 chose to go with a Cell Shaded approach, but not the horrible kind that Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker used, the graphics in this game is quite seamless. They look freaking gorgeous, more so than other games.

There are some people who say that games are not art, well PSN game Journey and Ni No Kuni beg to differ. If these are not art, then I don't know what is. This is what poeple mean when they mention how artful games can be.

The soundtrack in NNK is also one of the best, it's funny when you think that top teir game developers choose to use great music but they don't have a clue where and when to use it. Not with this game, the music in this game (and the sound effects which is often overlooked as well) is not only perfect for this style of game, but it also fits the situations that the music is trying to represent.

Here is an example of the music, this is the Main Theme:

They really took the time to make sure that all aspects of this game were melded together as they should be, and as they do with their other games.

This game does have a hindrance though, and that is in their battles. Now there are some people that don't like a big part of the battle mechanics, I onl;y have problems with one. Along the way you get "familiars" they are tamed creatures (people don compare this game to pokemon) the problem with this is that when any of those creatures are out if it takes damage or uses MP you lose damage and lose MP. That's a freaking huge problem. If you give use creatures to use in battle, they should have their own HP and MP and not take it from youself.

A slight problem for me and a big problem for others is that you don't really feel free. The game does hold your hand, but then again this game is probably targeted towards a younger audience, but I wish that they didn't some much hold your hand with a death grip, but more like a slight squeeze.

In the end this is one of my top 3 RPG's, probably my favorite one that I've ever played. TO take the role of an average person (in this case a boy) and take and follow him through a journey of magic and a journey of the heart in order to stop evil and hopefully save your mother.

I give this game whopping 9.9 out of 10.

My only problem with this game is that the familiars (not sure about human counterparts since I am about to get one) share your HP and MP. Not a big fan of that, and wish that each creatures gets it's own set of complete stats. However since I always over level in games this is not a huge issue for me.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Final Fantasy XIII Review

Final Fantasy XII is another line in the prestigious series known as Final Fantasy. The Final Fantasy is a strong RPG series, but this game has changed a few aspects and some were not well received.

Final Fantasy XIII is part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis Final Fantasy collection of games. These games include but are not limited to Final Fantasy XIII, XIII-2, Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, and Final Fantasy Versus XIII

Final Fantasy XIII takes place on a floating world of Cocoon, it hovers above a hostile planet named Grand Pulse. Your main role changes, there are six main characters that you progress with and help them with their stories/lives. In the game there are 2 different types of people, normal ones and ones that are marked by beings called fal'Cie (beings with godlike powers) the problem with this is that there are fal'Cie from Pulse and Cocoon, whom both have had wars with. If you are on Cocoon and are either marked by a Pulse fal'Cie (humans that are marked by any fal'Cie are called l'Cie) or may have come into contact with anything Pulse related, they want to purge that horribleness from you to keep Cocoon safe.

You soon find out that this Purge is nothing more than a mass murder and it's your job to stop the Purge and uncover the truth.

This is where things go bad for this game. The main protagonist is Lightning, you are a former soldier, who is trying to save her sister Serah from the purge, however since you and your party members are l'Cie, you are all dangerous and deserve to be purged, most of the time Final Fantasy games might have some people who have it in for you, but in this story you are hated, it really makes you stop and think why go through all of this trouble to help poeple when they hate us.

I really think that they could have done more with the story, or at least lighten it up a bit. The other big problem with this game is that this game is really linear. I mean really, really, really linear. You don't get to travel from place to place like you use now, now you are on fixed paths that really make no sense at all. This is the one thing that I hated, and since this game is very long by the time you can really feel free to explore you are almost done with the game anyways.

The character development though is really good, you really feel happy when they are happy and sad when they are sad. So they made a somewhat weak overall game story but exceeded in character story, not sure why but I'm happy that they nailed that right.

A game can have a weak story and not impact the game's experience all that much. However if a character or characters stories are as weak or weaker then it fails, this doe not.

They did a really good job with not only their character detail but also their details that they out into the locations that you visit. They really portray what people like myself and others call certain games "art". They are not realistic, but it's not suppose to be.

They did bring one thing into this game that I really love called Paradigms. Each one of your characters have affinity for certain roles, later on you can teach them to be good at all, but they ahve a few main roles that they excel in, in the beginning.

These roles are Commando (fierce attacking), Medic (Healing, reviving, etc.), Ravager (Final Fantasy XIII's equivalent to a Black Mage, offensive magic), Saboteur (removing or granting an enemy with unhelpful status, like slow, imperil, deshell, etc.), Synergist (The opposite of  a Saboteur, the character grants helpful status on youself/team members. e.g. protect, shell, haste, faith, bravery, etc.) Laste role is a Sentinel, sentinel is like a giant target for the enemies, sentinels take damage while team members take less to almost none. Abilities include, provoke (taunts enemy to attack sentinel and not other members), steelguard (reduces the damage that the sentinel receives and reduces the damage more for each time the character is attacked. Another good ability is Mediguard, reduces damage taken and also regains health back.

Paradigm are only for when you have more than one character fighting at the same time (e.g. 2 or 3) There are many different roles to use (I won't list them all here, but here is an example or two of a Paradigm:

Cerberus: Com/Com/Com (all three members are set to Commando)
Bully:      Com/Sab/Syn  One member a Commando, one a Saboteur, and the other a Synergist.

You can change your Paradigms in battle by pressing Paradigm shift button and selecting which on you want to use. In order to use one though you need to make them while your not in battle in the game menu.

Battles are rated this time, by your time. You don't lose anything (except for certain missions that don't hurt the story) if you are slow. However the better score you receive, the better items you can obtain from battles (common and rare drops from enemies) and the more TP you earn back. TP (or Technical Points) is what you use to use certain spells or summon creatures. Some itmes let you earn them faster and the more enemies you battle and defeat, the more it refills.

With all of the good and the bad (LINEAR GAMES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) don't let anyone sway your decision. You should give this game a try. It's not a bad game by any facet of the imagination but a lot of poeple have given this game much disrespect because that's why a lot of pople are doing. They are being mindless sheep, they need to learn how to form their own opinions, or at the very least read a truthful review like this one and see what they think of it.

I give this game a 9.4 out of 10

This game is very long and the fact that like 75% of it is linear is a problem but since I've been around for so long I remember playing many linear games. While I hate them I will give them a shot, which is far less than what I can say about other people.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Call of Duty Black Ops 2 Review

Call of Duty is in the air. Or is that the Lightning Strike hitting your flesh? Either way, Call of Duty Black Ops 2 is the next installment in the CoD franchise and it's one of my favorites of these last few games. My favorite Call of Duty Game you ask? World at War!!!

Black Ops 2 has done something unthinkable, it changed the Call of Duty model that we knew of, and this is good, and bad!

Black Ops 2 has implemented new features and changed old trusty ones. First killstreaks are gone, now scorestreaks have taken it's place. Scorestreaks are the same as killstreaks except instead of getting 5 kills for this, or 9 kills for that, you have to get 400 Points for this and 900 points for that, etc.

This new model is both good and bad. You see for someone who is just a TDM (Team Deathmatch) player this is bad. For each kill you get points, well now you have to get more kills to get the same streak you would have obtained for less kills. However for team based objective games like Domination, Kill Confirmed, etc. this is great. For grabbing a neutral flag you get 50 points, well cap an enemy owned flag and get 200 points.

I believe that they should have given you the option to have it one way or the other for youy different classes, like how Modern Warfare 3 did for theirs. So instead of having and Assault scorestreak and a Support, you could have a Killstreak class and a Scorestreak Class.

The campaign (story) has gone so far into the future it's not even funny. Instead of having this game in the future, it would have been nice to know and experience first hand what happened after the end of Black Ops. With that said the story is pretty solid, I guess as solid as any shooter could be, there are some holes and gaps in it, but that doesn't and shouldn't shock anyone.

The sounds of Call of Duty are good, I wish they could have changed a few songs, like with Zombies, etc.  The sound effects of guns firing and explosions and stuff is also really good, I prefered older games sound effects, but that just me.

The graphics are really good, but I have a BIG problem with this. They tweaked the IW engine yet again, but what bothers me is that they still used the old IW 3.0 and not the new 4.0 why? Why not use the new engine and tweak is like you were going to do anyways? To me that screams lazyness and who cares what I put out.

Another big problem with this game is glitches, not Multiplayer glitches (I have yet to look for/at them) but Zombie glitches. Isn't it funny that Modern Warfare 3's survival or chaos mode does have a few glitches, but EVERY Treyarch game (W@W, BO, BO2) Zombies glitches are everywhere. In TranZit alone I know of 6+7 working glitches are of right now. With all of that aside though, they do patch them usually quickly, but still 6-7 glitches and that the ones that I know of.

Multiplayer is fun, much more so than Black Ops. The games seem better, hardly any lag from Black Ops 2 games that I've played. If I popped in Lag Ops, I would have lag almost every other game.

Now with the Scorestreaks (Mentioned earlier in this post) you must play for points, not kills,. You know they way Domination, and Kill Confirmed are supposed to be played.

Zombies is back, bigger and better than ever, well not as good as World at War Zombies, but much better than Black ops zombies. The new maps have 2 different modes, Survival (normal zombies) and Grief. Grief features two factions: CIA and CDC. The teams cannot directly harm one another but they can still hinder each other. Only powerups and pickups that one member gets from one team gives it to their team, the other team gets nothing from it.  The final Zombie game is called TranZit, TranZit is different from all other Zombie maps ever. It's different in the fact that it goes from one map to the others. You can take a bus or hoof it from one area to the other, so the ones you play in susvival you can play all of them in TranZit. It's fast paced and crazy, but it's filled with fun and challenge. Challenge in the form of a new boss, you can say that this boss has a very electric personality!

At the end of the day, Black Ops 2 is easily one of the best games and is way better than the first Black ops games, in both level of fun and quality of games.

I give this game an 8.9 out of 10.

I really wished that some of the maps in Black ops 2 could be a bit bigger they seem squished in. I also wished that Killstreaks and Scorestreaks could be interchangeable with one another.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Culdcept PS2 Review + Pictures + Videos

Culdcept is a weird game, it's part board game and part card game. Think of Magic the Gahtering (Or some other card game like it) and Monopoly. Put them in one of those paint shakers and mix them out.

The end product is Culdcept, an interesting yet frustrating game. Combos and game breakers (like real card games) are filled in this game. Some of the combos are funny, even when you are losing it's hard to be mad at the game. It has a nice cute feeling to it, that people of all ages can like.

The story is Culdcept is the book of creation and destruction. Culdra Absolute Goddess, the keeper of the book is making sure that there is balance in the Universe, both good and bad. Whomever owns the Culdcept book obtains her powers. Cepters (Your player and others that you battle) control culdcept and battle. (for either good or evil) Any victor becomes a god and has the power to create a new World. New world being formed are part of the never ending cycle of reincarnation.  There is one cepter that Culdra has foreseen, his name Geminigh is his plot is to end the cycle of new worlds forming and control the entire universe.

This is where you come in, you must fight cepters, build your deck and eventually fight and defeat the evil Geminigh before he can take over the universe.

One of the best things about this game is well everything, from the music to the graphics style of the game, the mechanics like how some cards work to the story and the characters individual story.

Each battle is either 1v1 or 1v2 or 1v1v1 (free for all), etc. and all are played on a board, but not one board. Each map has it's own board to play on and each board has it's own niche differences.

The first board in Dunnan (pictured below) is the first one you play it's comprised of 18 squares. 4 squares of Blue, Red, Yellow, Green and one Castle (The top square) and the bottom square is a fort. The idea is to put element matching creatures on their respective land, so a red creature on a red land. If you do this you get bonus in HP for your creature. The goal is to get a certain amount of G, or Mana and then reach the Castle. Dunnan is I believe 5,000 G before you are victorious.

 After you win you receive cards that you can add to your deck. Depending on who you fought against will change the types of cards you obtain. For example the second story battle is against a person named Zagol, the Head Thief. When you win you are more likely to receive red creature cards from him, Fighting Luthien will net you will spell cards. This are not absolute however, you will still receive other types of cards from them, but for the most part you will see that they have tendencies to the cards that you get.

There's more that I could go into like shrines, etc. but then it would become more of a walkthrough than a review. The most important thing to know is that the game has a very good tutorial system and you will never feel lost in this game.

You can even have custom matches with the AI and this is where the grinding happens. You can have 2v2 teams, you can decide on how many rounds the game can take or how much G someone must acquire in order to achieve a victory. This is where I spent most of my time in this game.

Sometimes the music can be a little boring, especially if playing long matches or you are playing the same map. However with quick games or with games that have a lot of action, e.g. attacking/defending you won't get so bothered by it. I was never bothered by the music but I know that some people have been.

The graphics above are 3DS picture of the first map, ps2 pictures are below, plus an old video I took a while back will also be below. I am rendering some videos for uploading now so I will have the intro and the first battle so far will be going up very soon. I won't do a let's play since this game is hard where you need to get better cards but sometimes that's easier said than done!

In the end this game is amazing, the PS2 is a port (I believe) of the Sega Saturn version, there is also a DS and a 3DS version but I believe that every other Culdcept game is Japanese. There is an English Culdcept on the 360 called Culdcept Saga as well.

This game gets a 10 out of 10 you can play with your friends, you can play with teams like 2v2 of you and an AI vs Ai or you and your friend vs AI (I believe so)

PS2 Pictures:

PS2 Videos: