Friday, November 11, 2016

[REVIEW] The King of Fighters XIV (PS4)

The King of Fighters XIV
Played on: PS4
Genre: 2D Fighting
Developer: SNK
Publisher: SNK / Deep Silver / Atlus

Back when I was getting really into video gaming, 2D fighting was all the rage. It all started with Capcom's Street Fighter II, but soon it was another japanese company that established itself as the absolute master of the genre: SNK. With Capcom's recent ill-advised handling of the latest Street Fighter title, it seems fitting that SNK's premier franchise, The King of Fighters, would end up being the best option for those who want to get a brawl going on the PS4.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

[REVIEW] Axiom Verge (Wii U)

Axiom Verge
Played on: Wii U
Genre: Action-adventure / 2D "Metroidvania" Platformer
Developer / Publisher: Thomas Happ Games

It's ironic that Axiom Verge was released on Wii U on the same day Metroid Prime: Federation Force hit the 3DS. That's because, while Nintendo's own portable title largely failed to entice those clamoring for more Metroid, Thomas Happ's indie homage to Samus Aran's adventures is nothing short of a masterpiece.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

[REVIEW] Hyper Light Drifter (PS4)

Hyper Light Drifter
Played on: PS4
Genre: Top-down Action-adventure
Developer / Publisher: Heart Machine

Helping fund a game through Kickstarter is often a dangerous proposition. Some end up not getting made at all, while others go through changes in scope or release plans. Hyper Light Drifter is an example of the latter; I was really looking forward to play the now-cancelled Wii U version, especially because of a the map possibilities of the gamepad. Thankfully, it did get released on PS4, and it very much lives up to the hype.

Friday, September 23, 2016

[REVIEW] Bravely Second: End Layer (3DS)

Bravely Second: End Layer
Played on: 3DS
Genre: Strategy RPG
Developer: Intelligent Systems / Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo

A few years ago, Square Enix released Bravely Default, a little masterpiece of an RPG that got sadly dragged down towards the end by an insane amount of grinding and repetition. For the sequel, I was hoping they'd avoid this sort of thing. Instead, we get what amounts to a few dozen extra hours of, well, repetition.

[REVIEW] Mighty No. 9 (Wii U)

Mighty No. 9
Played on: Wii U
Genre: Action platformer
By: Comcept / Inti Creates / Deep Silver

After a protracted development period that saw many early supporters turn to non-believers, Keiji Inafune's spiritual successor to Mega Man proves it wasn't really worth the wait after all.

Monday, June 20, 2016

[REVIEW] Chronicles of Teddy: Harmony of Exidus (Wii U)

Chronicles of Teddy: Harmony of Exidus
Played on: Wii U
Genre: 2D adventure-platformer
Developer: Look at my Game / Storybird
Publisher: Aksys Games

The indie game scene has become pretty much the only place to get your fix of 2D metroidvanias, with quite a few excellent titles in the genre released over the past few years. Chronicles of Teddy, the latest of them to reach Wii U, is an interesting game to review, as its absolute excellence in adventure design is almost matched in intensity by the numerous development problems that used to plague the game upon release.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

[REVIEW] Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest (3DS)

Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest
Played on: 3DS
Genre: Strategy RPG
Developer: Intelligent Systems / Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo

Following the success of Fire Emblem: Awakening in finally making Nintendo's storied strategy series popular in a large scale, it was inevitable that we'd get more Fire Emblem action on 3DS. This came true in the form of Fire Emblem Fates, an exciting follow-up that keeps a lot of what made Awakening great and brings its own new ideas to the fold.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

[REVIEW] FreezeME (Wii U)

Played on: Wii U
Genre: 3D adventure-platformer
Developer / Publisher: Rainy Night Creations

I'm not sure why 3D platformers have fallen so out of favor with the mainstream, but I sure wish it wasn't so. Thankfully, more and more indie developers have been taking up the mantle in recent years, and the lastest result of that effort is FreezeME, a fun title that has genuinely surprised me.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

[REVIEW] Xenoblade Chronicles X (Wii U)

Xenoblade Chronicles X
Played on: Wii U
Genre: Open-world RPG
Developer: MonolithSoft
Publisher: Nintendo

One of my most anticipated titles of this generation, Xenoblade Chronicles X is certainly not your everyday game. It's a massive sci-fi RPG, with probably the largest open-world I've ever seen. All of its charms, and even its flaws, come from the fact that this is an enormously ambitious undertaking, presenting players with a huge playground of a planet that is ripe for adventuring and exploration.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Game of the Year: My Five Favorites of 2015

Making a Game of the Year list is harder than it seems, and not only because it can be tough to come up with a precise ranking.

Monday, February 1, 2016

[REVIEW] Yoshi's Woolly World (Wii U)

Yoshi's Woolly World
Played on: Wii U
Genre: 2D platformer
Developer: Good-Feel
Publisher: Nintendo

The original Yoshi-based adventure game, Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island, was an excellent late surprise in the SNES library. Released as Nintendo's focus was already shifting to the Nintendo 64, it was a breath of fresh air with its highly innovative platforming mechanics and fresh pencil-like art style. Yoshi's Woolly World takes that game's legacy and runs with it, and while it doesn't offer a lot of innovation this time around, it's the kind of sequel fans of the original game would undoubtedly sign for.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

[REVIEW] Undertale (PC)

Played on: PC
Genre: RPG 
Developer / Publisher: tobyfox

Whenever I hear of a quirky role-playing game, I immediately think of one of my favorite game series of all time: Earthbound (a.k.a. Mother). That series's cult following has spawned quite a few projects inspired by it, and Undertale is the latest in that club. What sets this particular title apart, however, is that it has loads of original ideas thrown in the mix, providing an experience that is honestly unlike anything I've ever played. A mere clone this is not.