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Author Topic: TZH Game Reviews II: Sins of the Reviewer  (Read 36073 times)
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« Reply #75 on: September 18, 2010, 02:12:56 am »

Now for my review! XD

Recently Completed: Halo Reach Legendary Edition

System: Xbox 360

Time Spent So Far: About 24+ Hours (About 8 for the Campaign).

Story: Taking place prior to the events of Halo 1, it is the year 2552, Reach is one of two remaining human colonized planets, which is also where the Spartans we're born. You assume the role of Noble 6, of the Spartan Noble Squad, you're sent to investigate a missing squad of soldiers suspected to have been attacked by Insurrectionist Rebels who are against the UNSC, you soon discover that it was not Rebels who attacked the soldiers, but the Covenant, on their great crusade to wipe Humanity from the Galaxy.

What's in the Special Edition?: In the Legendary Edition you get a very nice looking statue of Noble Team that's very nicely detailed and made by McFarlane Toys, you get a token to download a special "Making of" type video, Falcon Avatar Prop, Bonus Elite Armor, and Flaming Helmet Effect.
Then there's the contents of the Regular Collectors edition, Recon Helmet, and Dr. Halseys Diary, which is very well made, no cheap ass paper, good quality stuff, and it looks great, it's not some dumb little art book, it's full of notes and sketches done by Dr. Halsey from the game and books, it feels like an actual item pulled from the game. The diary is pretty damn thick too, and in the back of it is a pouch full of goodies like Halseys ID Key Card, letters from ONI, files on Spartans, and a bunch of other stuff.

The Good:
+ Halo Reach utilizes new motion capture technology, Animations look more fluid, and realistic, with good facial animations, not just sock puppet mouths flapping up and down.
+ Halo Reach also runs on a new Engine, the graphics have been greatly improved, and the game looks great.
+ Armor abilities. You can fly in jet packs, drop a healing bubble shield, cloak, and a few other fun and useful abilities!
+ Like the past Halo games, this one features excellent voice acting.
+ Amazing music as well.
+ The characters are all pretty cool, whats also cool is that they're diverse in terms of their culture. One character has a Hungarian accent, and speaks the language, and the other sounds like she speaks Russian, or some sort of Easter Bloc language.
+/- Vastly Improved Forge Mode. You can morph objects through the environment, freeze them in place, and all kinds of sweet new stuff. There's 1 map called "Forge World" which is a colossal map with a huge variety of areas to make stuff in. The only annoying thing is the controls for Forge are still a bit twitchy, though not as much as they were in Halo 3.
+ Fun new multiplayer modes like competitive firefight, Invasion, Head Hunter, and a few others!
+ Your characters is much more customizable, with way more choices in armor. You can have different visor colors, knee pads, thigh piece, wrist piece, helmets, and all kinds of cool stuff, which can be purchased with the in game currency "Credits", which can be earned in any of the game modes. Your character also carries over to Campaign, whatever your Spartan is customized as, he or she will appear that way in all game modes.
+ Speaking of currency, it's also the new Experience System. The amount of Credits you earn amounts to your EXP as well, and you level up as you would in an RPG. Upon ranking-up you get more items to purchase!
+ Fun new vehicles like the Falcon, which is similar to the Hawk in Halo 3, but has awesome side mounted machine guns for your friends to use, and it is a blast to ride shotgun on, then there's also the Revenant, a cross between a ghost and a wraith, fast and agile, but it wields a small mortar cannon, as well as an extra seat for your friend.
+ There's a few really fun really fun moments in the game to mix things up, at one point you blast off in a Sabre Fighter Jet to take the fight to the covenant in Space, in a couple missions there might be a short moment where you ride shotgun in a Falcon and blast enemies with the mounted weapon, and there's one mission that's mainly an aerial combat mission.
+ Firefight is back, and as fun as ever, with customizable rules. Want endless magazines, god mode, and rocket launchers? Well you can do that! Firefight can also be played in Matchmaking.
+ Cool new weapons, like the DMR, Needle Rifle, and some other great new ones!
+ Collectibles to go back and find in Campaign which add to the Lore of Halo like the Terminals did in Halo 3.

The Bad:
- Some iffy spawn points in certain online multiplayer maps.
- 8 Hour campaign still isn't that long, there's only 10 missions, a couple more levels would have been nice.
- The characters, while cool, I didn't get incredibly attached to aside from a couple of them.
- In one of the early levels, you get to fight two really large, very fierce creatures that are indigenous to Reach, but after you kill those two you never see them again.

Overall: 9.5/10. Halo Reach is easily the best in the series, so much has been improved, with a lot of replay value, and fun times to be had online, and with you're friends. I just wish the game could have been a bit longer.
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« Reply #76 on: September 21, 2010, 10:30:28 am »

Recently Completed: The Dark Spire

System: Nintendo DS

Time Spent: 57:10

Story: The Archmage Tyrhung has stolen the Queen's Royal Treasure, a necklace known as The Fairy's Tears and disappeared into The Dark Spire on the 7th floor. The king has offered a reward for whoever could retrieve the necklace from Tyrhung, and as a group of adventures, it's your job to do just that.

The Good:
+ An honest to God homage to old-school RPGs, and arguably the most old-school in the DS library. Which means it's strictly for a niche group.
+ Even if it's seven floors (plus a Basement), it's quite a long game with some post-game content.
+ Different races, classes and alignments (Plays a bigger role than you expect, considering the benefits of them later on) with each race having better/worse stats than others which can affect you later on.
+ Simple turn-based combat that can be deeper than one initially expects. Various swords have different attacks, a nice amount of spells and the option to cast them normally, quickly (At the cost of accuracy) and carefully (At the cost of speed). And there's spell management, with only being able to summon 9 spells from each domain. Simple overall, but you'll probably be thankful that it's simple when all's said and done.
+ EP gained can be used for class levels, skills and stat increases.
+ Two types of settings: Classic and Modern. Modern is dark and gritty with some sweet tracks, especially floors 6 and 7, which sound like opera and give it an epic feel. And floor 4, which is borderline creepy when you first get there. Classic mode is something old-school gamers will love, bleeps and boops for music and wire-frame mode will bring back memories of RPGs from the olden days.
+ Wire-frame mode. It's so awesome, it warrants another plus. The modern setting is quite nice, but fricking wire-frame!
+ Some nice dialogue that makes up for the lack of story. Quite humorous at times, especially when you first start.
+/- Without a doubt, one of the most brutal and difficult games for the DS. For actual survival in the Spire and in the godforsaken puzzles. It isn't for newcomers to the genre or casual RPG fans, and can be quite hard to get into if one isn't a fan of it's roots/specific genre.
+ You kept that Thief around to disarm chests, and fortunately more often than not he'll do his job.
+ The elevator takes you up to floor 4, but you'll have to make the rest of the trip up yourself. I'm simply glad it's there.
+/- Backtracking. You'll learn to hate it.
+ Save anywhere. Those two words alone will be some of the sweetest you'll ever hear in this game. But having a save-anywhere feature basically means you're screwed and would be screwed otherwise.
+/- You'll never run out of gold. By the time I finished, I was running over 800,000 gold pieces in my purse (It's called that, and it's a manly one).
+/- The puzzles more often than not lack a bit of direction, but die-hards may love that aspect.
+/- In the endgame, Arcane Magic users trump pretty much everything else. So if you planned for it, kudos to you! If not... actually, it can be considered more mid-game where they start to become even more essential.

The Bad:
- Screw story. That's all you're going to get. And it ain't about the story anyway.
- You WILL need a guide. Seriously.
- Not knowing the stat requirements for secondary classes, which means if you didn't get decent stat points at the beginning... have fun grinding for EP.
- HP gains. Have fun with that.
- Actually needing to use an item or a spell to know your location on the map.
- The game doesn't show the stats of equipment, only the AC (Armor Class) so you don't know if that 3000g Katana is better than that 100g Estoc.
- Ambush by dragons = dead party. Or on the brink of death if you're lucky.
- Some of the quests (Sun Stone, I'm looking at you, you rat bastard) are downright brutal without a guide.

Score: 8/10, I'll say this; fans of the genre played this game. Everybody else would probably have a hard time finding out why those few loved it so much. The difficulty and lack of direction for the puzzles will turn everybody else away in droves, but if you have the courage to forge on then by all means give it a go. Just remember what you're getting into.

Better Than: Etrian Odyssey

Worse Than: Etrian Odyssey II
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« Reply #77 on: October 28, 2010, 12:12:16 am »

Recently Completed: Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City

System: Nintendo DS

Time Spent: 70+ hours

Story: Fresh from your voyage to Armoroad, you create your guild, one of many, and start your journey into the Labyrinth to try and uncover the Deep City that was lost a century ago.

The Good:
+ A new 70+ hour journey with a new setting, new classes, new half of it, but with the same old-school RPG goodness.
+ A whole new slew of classes, dumping the old instead of nerfing and tweaking the second game's classes. And more balanced than the previous games.
+ Subclasses, adds a crap load more customization and allows a party member to act as two roles. Played well and it'll be less grinding for you.
+/- As usual, the costumes and characters for your party can be... questionable.
+ A secondary aspect has been added: Sea-Faring. It's a puzzle where you have a limited amount of moves to get to where you want to go, but there's plenty of cash money to be made and events to see. Definitely a pleasant surprise.
+ Sea Quests, also known simply as extra boss battles. Some sweet drops that can make your life easier. If you can get them. The quests appeal to a large range of levels, so you wouldn't plow through them early on or even in the middle-late game.
+/- Plenty of them recycle some bosses from the previous games, which can be both a blessing and a curse.
+ Map making tweaked a bit, with one of the best features being autopilot. Set a route, hit autopilot and it does the work for you. Except for battles. But you have auto-battle for that.
+ FOEs once again give exp for killing them, a feature that was removed from the first game.
+ Story's pretty good this time around, it's riding shotgun instead of lounging in the backseat. The quick blurb up there is the jist of it, to prevent spoilers. The next plus isn't much of one.
+ A decision you make around the middle part determines what happens next. Which leads to the next plus.
+ Multiple endings? You'd best believe it holmes. The game just got longer.
+ Add to that a New Game + feature, which cuts down second and third playthroughs by dozens of hours.
+/- Graphics and sound are still about the same. Character models look good but still very little animation.
+/- Some enemies (Normal ones in this case) are recycled from previous games with nerfs and buffs. But it's kinda nice to say, "Hey, I remember fighting him before!" or "Aw fuck! Not again!" for a certain FOE in the first game. You know the one.
+ Coupons for 50% off items, which really cuts down foraging for the ones given by items from rare drops. Used wisely, no more spending hours to pay full price for that 250,000en sword!
+ Formaldehyde. Ensures a drop on the turn it's used. It's so good, it deserves it's own plus. Prevents immense trial-and-error for rare drops from bosses.
+/- Healing is cheaper than ever before. WAY cheaper. As in Nectars are now 50en instead of 500en which saves you immense stacks of cash in the early game. You'll still cut a trip early on short if someone kicks the bucket though.
+/- Easier than the last game but still pretty tough.
+ Overall, the best starting place if one wants to get into the series.

The Bad:
- May be a bit too grind-heavy for some, but a proper skill-set would help lessen the burden.
- As usual, mess up skill allocation and you'll get an early grave for your troubles.
- Multiplayer is only local and if I'm right, can only bring one character on the sea-quest per player. But it's something.
- One can still run out of icons and notes to use, so get creative.
- Removal of the Orange Submagnetic Pole can be a bit of an annoyance when you have to fight bosses a few times, but that's what proper skill allocation is for. Still a few times to know their tricks.
- Map layouts in the last stratum are always a pain, but this time around is a tad more forgiving. Considering that it almost turned into the debacle that is EO I's  Floor's 27/28.
- Alongside that, areas where you can't see your or the FOE's position on the map. Auto-Tracking doesn't work in said areas as well.

Score: 9/10, third game and I'm loving it more and more. Keeps the old-school gameplay and the good stuff of the previous games (And some bad, depending on one's perspective) and brings in a new setting, new classes, more features and yet again, improvements to the already amazing map-making. If one were to enter the series and had the choice of any of the three, this would be the way to go. It's the most polished, balanced and accessible of the three, without sacrificing much of what was before. Definitely worth a pick-up if you enjoy the specific sub-genre the game caters to.

Better Than: Etrian Odyssey I and II, The Dark Spire
« Last Edit: October 31, 2010, 07:53:55 pm by HK-47 » Logged



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« Reply #78 on: January 22, 2011, 05:05:29 pm »

Mine will be up in a bit. Mostly when I can get to it.
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« Reply #79 on: January 22, 2011, 06:45:26 pm »

Next time just post it, man.
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« Reply #80 on: February 07, 2011, 03:11:46 pm »

(Not Really) Recently Completed: Second Sight

Systems: Gamecube (Played on), PS2, X-Box, PC

Time Spent: 8:50:20 (Restarted a few times and it didn't keep track of all the restarts, so it kept track of what it could)

Story: Tied to a bed in a Medical Facility, being wheeled to a doctor, you are soon put to sleep. Upon waking up confined to a bed, you free yourself through psychic powers. But even with your powers, you don't know who you are or how you got there so you decide to find out.

The Good:
+ Without a doubt one of the most compelling stories I've seen on the Cube. Takes it's hold from the start and doesn't let go.
+ How it manages two different points in time effectively, story and gameplay wise.
+ The writing is just as good, which only makes the story even better.
+ A side point to the one above, but early on, after the elevator ride, there's a computer with access to a chat-room. Both chilling and compelling, and a bit unsettling.
+ The characters, in particular John Vattic. The story wouldn't be half as good without characters to care about.
+ I generally don't like stealth, but the game does it pretty well. A few ways to use it makes it a lot less tedious.
+ If an alarm is raised, the mission isn't over. Serious plus for those (Like me) who can't walk around without tripping an alarm.
+/- Run-and-Gun is another option from stealth, but it isn't generally encouraged. Still, it's nice to have a choice.
+ Along with stealth missions, I hate escort missions, specifically protecting an AI that's two feet away and who gets into fights with you and without a weapon and who generally gets killed. Here, that ain't the case. The AI's smarter this time around and you can tell it to stay put or to follow you, and they'll hide if needed.
+/- A few weapons to choose from, but not the variety of a dozen pistols and twenty different rifles. And the weapons vary from each level; When a level is completed, you usually start the next with a specific set, not the one you ended with. As in if you complete a level with a SMG with 200 rounds, you wouldn't start the next with that.
+ The use of psychic powers is pretty good; from offensive based powers to healing and a stealth-based power (To some extent). As well as a couple more.
+ The game felt very open-ended, or non-linear in a way. I don't play much games like these, but it felt like there was a lot of freedom in it. In how you can reach your destination, how you take care of enemies, how you can get past them; how for every event or scenario, you have a multitude of choices to get past or to get to where you need to go. Brilliant.
+ Some may feel like it's on the easy side (Charm to get past enemies, Healing as a power), but it felt challenging at parts, in particular in one of the latter levels. You'll know it when you see it.
+ The music. Hands down amazing. It brings you into the game and fits the atmosphere perfectly. It doesn't get in the way and only enhances the experience.
+ Voiceovers keep you in the game, and only bring the experience of it all even higher.
+ The game clocks in around the ten hour mark. It doesn't overstay it's welcome and it's not too short. Probably the right amount of time for a game of this genre hybrid.
+ No driving missions, no on-rails shooting missions, nothing to bog down the stealth or gunfights.
+ Muddy footprints. That was a nice touch. Watch where you step.

The Bad:
- Better pray the enemies don't spawn continuously.
- A certain enemy type that's either easy to take out or will take a clip or three. Of an automatic.
- There's a glitch in the Cube version of the game in one of the levels in the middle part of the game but it's not a game-breaking bug. Still took me a while to get past it though.
- The ending's a bit anti-climatic.

Score: 9.0/10, even with it being primarily stealth-based, I enjoyed the hell out of it. I may have had some problems on a few levels but the clever level design saw me through, and more than all that; the story. Flat-out amazing, even with the ending. It starts compelling and continues on the same way. Heavily recommended if you own one of the previous generation consoles.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2011, 03:23:10 pm by HK-47 » Logged



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« Reply #81 on: March 17, 2011, 09:23:36 pm »

Recently Completed: Pikmin 2

System: Gamecube

Time Spent: 20:16 (Recorded, but in reality, add another 2-3 hours for resets)

The Story: Returning from his adventures on the Pikmin world, Olimar heads back home to find out the company he works for, Hocotate Freight is in the negatives of 10,000 pokos. When he drops the bottle cap he had with him, the last ship the company has scans it and declares it's worth 100 Pokos; a year's salary. The company president then sends Olimar and Louie back to the Pikmin world for spelunking and treasure raiding to help clear up the debt.

The Good:
+ Hands down one of the best console RTS games out there and one of the best in general for the Cube.
+ Mature themes mixed in a cute, kiddy, adorable setting. Killing, crushing the life out of foes, harvesting their corpses to produce more Pikmin, slavery of lesser beings and to put them in danger instead of yourself... brilliant stuff.
+ The addition of multiplayer is pretty rad and fun to boot.
+ The Piklopedia; contains the treasures you've obtained and any wildlife you brushed up against or butchered cruelly. With the notes and other tidbits that go along with it, it's far more than a simple gallery.
+ As well as the addition of a Challenge mode, where you have to collect treasures and get a good score in a time-limit and with set Pikmin/spray numbers. Bonus points for no Pikmin lost.
+ The control is spot on but occasional errors with the D-Pad, using a spray when I want to change the colour or leaf/bud/flower of the Pikmin. Probably a human error though.
+ Two new Pikmin types; one for poison/environmental stuff and can see buried treasure as well as poisoning those who swallow it (Serves the bastards right for eating one) and one who has the strength of ten Pikmin and the ability to stun if it hits.
+ Sprays, one for boosting your Pikmin's speed and strength and another to turn enemies to stone temporarily.
+ A wide variety of enemies to crush and slaughter. They also look good to boot.
+ No time limit, so take as long as you want or blitz it.
+ Two captains means multitasking in two different areas while keeping an eye on it all.
+ The captains can do some damage on their own in a scrap, which is pretty handy.
+ Pretty challenging at times, especially for certain enemies and cave layouts but not overly tough.
+ Creative and fun bosses. They repeat, which can be good or bad depending on your taste.
+ In caves (Dungeons), the game autosaves when you enter a new floor. Perfect if you accidentally lose a whole slew of Pikmin accidentally to a trap or enemy.
+ Some nice graphics and it looks pretty damn good overall.
+ The music works perfectly and the Pikmin sounds are endearing and adorable, especially when you collect all the treasure on a floor; the chant is totally worth it.
+ I do enjoy some statistics, and it keeps track on your Pikmin growths, their losses and against any environmental hazards (Elements), explosions, in battle or in the sunset.

The Bad:
- An occasional pathfinding issue when crossing bridges which can mean drowned Pikmin.
- Just because I pressed the "Dismiss" button doesn't mean you can still follow me. Does get annoying at times.
- Your Pikmin don't always take the most efficient way to bring back treasure or carcasses. Gets a tad annoying when you are nearing the end of the day and want to get some berries or a treasure to the ship.
- The cries of your dying Pikmin. It's so sad...

Score: 9.3/10, absolutely brilliant stuff. Hands down one of the best console RTS games and a masterful mix of cuteness and violence. If you own a Gamecube or a Wii, you owe it to yourself to give this a go.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2011, 06:12:03 pm by HK-47 » Logged



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« Reply #82 on: March 18, 2011, 06:29:05 pm »

Imma place this down...

Name: Fable III

The Story: You are one of the two children of Albions previous ruler (your fable II character).
Your brother is a tyrant! He forces his people into poverty, has handed the whole industry over to a less then sane man. He forces you too flee for your life. And start, a revolution.

I can't give anymore away without giving you the plot.

I have also got the understone and traitors keep add-ons.

Time played: Main story, around 16 hours in a casual play through.
However as all fable fans will know, there are endless sidequests and achievments too get.

The Good: + Improved Graphics,

+ More voices other then "snooty rich english chap" and "shit for brains country bumpkin", I mean they have, Stephen Fry, John Cleese, Rowan Atkinson and Rick Mayal.

+ Smoother controls

+ Add-on fun, its still "new" so later additional Fable content will be out with new quests, outfits and the like.

+ VASTLY improved multiplayer experience!

+ Inter-character relationships

The Bad: - Tiny amount of main story.

- Race's you through the end.

- Some parts which should be AWSOME aren't.

- The game near enough is its own spoiler.


Score: 7/10 - I was really looking forewards to this game. In all I felt like it let me down a bit. Its still a fun game that im not getting rid of. But it was too short for an RPG...
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« Reply #83 on: March 22, 2011, 02:52:56 pm »

Recently Completed: Viewtiful Joe

System: Gamecube

Time Spent: 4:28:12 (Add another two to three hours for Stage 6)
Kids Mode Completed
Stages: 1-3, 5-7 Rank A
Stage 4, Rank B

The Story: A trip to the movies to see Joe's favorite super hero, Captain Blue, goes horribly wrong as Sylvia, his girlfriend, is kidnapped from the villain in the movie. To save her, Joe is taken into the movie as well and given a V-Watch by Captain Blue to enable him to turn into Viewtiful Joe and save his girlfriend.

The Good:
+ One of the most challenging and stylish action games for the Cube.
+ The combat; dodge and then Slow-hit an enemy to start a multiplier is pretty fun. Even normally the combat is enjoyable.
+ The VFX Powers; Slow, Mach Speed and Zoom, great for both puzzles and combat. And with Mach Speed, upgrades are available to get more Joes in when it's used.
+ Seriously, this game is soaked in style. Some of the most stylish stuff I've seen on the Cube and in general, and I don't just mean the graphics. It's a work of art.
+ How it blends 2D/3D into one majestic action romp in the movies. Joe moves in the 2D while enemies can pop in from the 3D/background whatever. It works most of the time and it looks good.
+ Aw hell, the game runs smoothly with no hiccups. Major plus in a fast-paced game like this.
+ The controls are pretty much spot on; the powers are at your fingertips. Could never get the timing of Ukemi right, but that's simply my lack of timing.
+ I do like the VO, especially the narrator. Kinda hammy at times.
+ The writing is pretty amusing and found myself chuckling quite a bit.
+/- Pretty challenging, even on Kids mode.
+ Unlockable characters.
+ Gotta love them references.
+/- The final boss is easier than the one before it, but still worthwhile.
+ Once more, style. Easily one of the top factors which make it good.

The Bad:
- Sometimes the camera is too zoomed in (Without using your Zoom power) so you may hit something that can damage you.
- Lasers, kinda awkward to time avoiding them as they move in depth most of the time instead of length or height wise only.
- A boss rush and another boss right after, all in the main game.
- Can go from challenging to frustrating from time to time.
- Unable to skip cut-scenes.

Score: 9/10, Style + Action + Movies + Style + Challenge = Viewtiful Joe. As fun as it is, it's controller bruising tough. It's a challenge for those who take it up but the ride is well worth it.
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« Reply #84 on: November 10, 2011, 10:16:25 am »

Recently Completed:  Back to the Future: The Game (The Tell Tale games series chapters 1-5)

System: PC

Time Spent:  Right about 20 hours

The Story:  It's Back to the Future!  Set a few months after the 3rd movie ended the story follows Marty trying to find out why Doc has dropped of the face of the Earth.  Marty goes back to 1931 to rescue Doc, goes back to 1986 to find his actions caused a Tannen crime family to rule Hill Valley, goes back to 1931 where he ends the Tannen crime spree, returns to 1986 he finds he instead caused Doc Brown to destroy Hill Valley as they know it, goes back to 1931 where he fights Doc Brown and probably the most annoying video game character ever created in a war over the path young Emmet Brown will travel.  Then Hill Valley is wiped almost entirely from History and more time travel ensues to set that right with another trip back, this time to the old West. 

The Good:  +  I love old School Adventure type games and this game ALMOST fits the bill.  I say almost because Marty never uses items with items to create inventive gadets which is in my opinion a staple of the genre.  More on that later.

+  Voice acting is top notch in this game.  Christopher Lloyd does the voice of Doc, Marty is NOT Micheal J. Fox despite what you may first think when you hear him.  But hell, in the last chapter Michael J. Fox DOES do a couple of voices which is awesome.  Tell Tale vetran Mellisa Huchison (Stinky from Sam and Max) does a noteworthy performance as Trixie.  Oh yea, the original Jennifer Parker (Marty's girlfriend) returns to do her own voice as well (I say original because Jennifer was played by a different actress in parts 2 and 3.)

+  The story and writing are fantastic.  Each chapter end had me scrambling to load up the next one so I could see what happened next.  Most of the dialog was well written and there are tons of references and in-jokes going back to the movies and a few even reference deleted scenes and early by well known script drafts so pretty much every level of Back to the Future geek/fanboy is being catered to.

The not so Good:  - As mentioned Marty does NOT combine items for repurposing which leads to a lot of the puzzles being on the too easy side.  Some puzzles are easy to figure out but hard to actually solve because they are needlessly long and repetitive in execution (Iím looking at you Mind Map puzzle).  This game also has one of the most HEINOUS examples of ďcanít continue until you do x even if doing x shouldnít even have to logically occurĒ (Yes, Iím talking about you ďtalk to the deep sea diver before entering the glass houseĒ).   

- The ending.  I know you want to set up for a sequel.  I really get it.  But you know what?  This ending wasnít needed.  It felt out of place and tacked on.  Or maybe it was just too much?  But yea, didnít dig the ending.

Final score:  B+  Despite the ending that didnít make me jump me for joy and the mostly too easy puzzles I greatly enjoyed it and if youíre either a fan of the Back to the Future games, Adventure games in general or Tell Tale games specifically youíll enjoy it.
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« Reply #85 on: January 14, 2012, 10:06:24 am »

Recently Completed: ToeJam and Earl in Panic on Funkotron

System: Sega Genesis

Time Spent: 7<x<12, where x represents the amount of hours played. An estimate.

Story: After their romp on the unfunky Earth, the funkadelic aliens ToeJam and Earl head back to Funkotron where some unradical aliens humans hitch a ride on their groovy ship. With the planet in an uproar and the Funkopotamus nowhere in sight and the funk disappearing at times, it's up to our tubular and funky duo to set things right in a gnarly fashion.

The Good:
+ It's so 90s: Cool, alright, AWEsome, The Funkzone.
+ And so funky, the game has loads of charm.
+ Awesome atmosphere.
+ Great soundtrack.
+ The VOs when there are groovy.
+ Creative enemy designs.
+ Boogeyman isn't as cheap as before.
+/- But not much from the first one.
+ Loads of secrets.
+ Optional Funkzone and boogie down segments.
+ Co-op for some groovy two-player antics.
+ A good sequel to the first game...
+/- ...but turns into a traditional sidescroller platformer, depending on your taste

The Bad:
- It's not like the first game nor as good.
- It is the 90s, so password saves were extremely hip for most games.
- Does get repetitive.
- Minor annoyance but poodles can juggle you, especially if you're Earl.
- The last level. Seriously fuckballs hard if
(click to show/hide)

Overall: 8/10 This is the second best game in the series, which is to say it's also the worst game in the two-part series. This isn't a bad thing, as it had to compete with the sublime rogue first game but if you're in the market, track down a copy of the righteous first. And the second, doubly so if you're a 90s child.

Worse Than: ToeJam and Earl

*Game may not contain as much awesome wording as the review did but it is still funky.
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« Reply #86 on: January 15, 2012, 03:26:14 am »

Recently completed, connect 4

Platfirm, table

2 player only

Story, no one seems to know why but two religions, based around the number four, but disagreeing on one major philosophy. Red, or yellow.
Aiming in the battle grid to get four of you colour connected it is a vicious and bloody game.

Rating, shit me this thing is a battle of wits!

Better then, mouse trap.
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« Reply #87 on: January 15, 2012, 03:39:40 am »

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« Reply #88 on: March 05, 2012, 10:06:56 am »

Recently Completed:  Jurassic Park the Game (4 chapter episodic title)

System: PC

Time Spent:  9.5 hours

The Story:  It's Jurassic Park!  Set during and after the 1st movie (the survivors featured in the first movie are evacuated before the close of the first episode) you control an array of new characters.  The story starts with InGenís rival company infiltrating Isla Nublar to recover the embryos that Dennis Nedry was trying to steal in the first movie.  One of the Park vets and his daughter get embroiled in that fiasco and eventually mercenary teams trying to recover the final survivors appear (and a lost scientist).

The Good:  +  I love Tell Tale games.  I had heard some mixed and downright opinions of this game so put off picking it up until it was on sale on Steam. 

+  I know I said this about the last Tell Tale game I reviewed but the voice acting is top notch in this game.  The voice actress for Jessi deserves to be called out because her occasions of emoting sheer terror are excellent.

+  The story and writing are good.  Subtle in jokes to the movie are done well enough that if you get them you chuckle, if you donít itís not going to mar the experience for you.  For the most part the characters interact well and the story progresses from disaster to disaster at frantic pace. 

The not so Good:  - The last Tell Tale game I reviewed I slammed for not having in depth puzzles.  This game is worse by far.  There are no real puzzles.  Youíre led by the hand with big icons indicating what to interact with and there is no inventory at all.  If you get this expecting an adventure game youíre setting yourself up for disappointment.  Oh wait, there are also conversation sequences.  Conversation and hand held ďpuzzlesĒ are all you have to break up the monotony of the gameplay.

- The gameplay.  Yea, Iím not sure I can even call it game play.  The aforementioned  ďlook around and pixel huntĒ sequences and ďconversationsĒ are the only break you have from the most heinous of all game ďinnovationsĒ; the quick time event.  Thatís right.  The bulk of the game is a series of cinematic events heavily laden with quick time events.  Iím not talking about occasional quick time events, I mean the game is almost entirely quick time events.  Iíve come to grudgingly accept QTEís as something I have to endure in many games but this is ridiculous. 

Final score:  D+  Despite the fact the story was good and I wanted to finish the game to see what happened itís not a very good game.  Itís nice that they give you the option to tackle scenarios (small chunks of the chapter) if youíre trying to get a gold rank for everything but thatís about the only part of the game I would call good design.  I played through once, then replayed the very last scenario to get a different ending and Iíll probably never touch the game again.  Itís a shame because Iíve loved Jurassic Park since the novel came out, loved the movie, and I love Tell Tale.  It blows my mind that they failed so hard at this.
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« Reply #89 on: March 05, 2012, 10:35:25 am »

Recently Completed:  Batman: Arkham City (w/Catwoman DLC)

System: Xbox 360

Time Spent:  Hell if I know, way too long.

The Story:  It's Batman!  Without spoiling too much this game is set six months after the events of Batman Arkham Asylum.  Warden Quincy Sharp is now the mayor of Gotham and his reaction to the Arkham Asylum disaster was to cordon off a section of Gotham City and lock all the lunatics in along with the population of Blackgate Prison and leave them to their own devices.  Joker is dying from the Titan injection he gave himself at the end of the last game, Two-Face, and Penquin are vying to take control of the city in his time of perceived weakness and oh yea, Bruce Wayne gets kidnapped by Hugo Strange (who knows heís Batman) and tossed in with the freaks.  The plot is very good and takes a number of exciting twists and turns, not least of which is that Batman becomes infected with Jokers tainted blood and has to find a cure before he dies as well.

The Good:  +  Graphics are top notch, voice acting is incredible (Kevin Conroy as Batman, Mark Hammil making his last performance as the Joker.)   

+  Open world game play instead of the linearity of AA.  Numerous side missions to keep you engaged.  Appearances by most of Batmans big name villains roster along with a couple more obscure ones for variety.

+  The story and writing are very good for the most part.  I donít want to spoiler too much so Iíll leave it at that.

+  The attention to detail by the dev team can be seen and felt in every aspect of the game.   

+  The combat makes you feel like a complete badass when it works like itís supposed to.  It still has rage inducing moments where Batman (or Catwoman) will lock onto the wrong target and break their combo (which can be crippling because special moves are linked to you combo multiplier) but it doesnít happen as often as it did in Arkham Asylum and the variety of moves and how they string together is mind boggling.  I played the game completely through twice and still was occasionally seeing maneuvers I hadnít seen before (and many are context sensitive, for instance if Catwoman is near a railing she will do combos off it.)

+  The Catwoman DLC was nicely implemented.  The sections you play as Catwoman werenít long but they were fun.  You had to adopt a different play style when playing as her because she lacks Batmans brute strength.  Her style is much more about speed and finesse and I found it much easier to string together ridiculously long combos as Catwoman.  Also she had far fewer gadgets.  Making the wrong choice as Catwoman was funny.  (Youíll know what Iím talking about if you ever reach that point with her.)  I donít know if Iíd pay the ten extra dollars to play her part, that seems a bit steep to me but I got her with my copy of the game.

The not so Good:  - The negatives are the for the most part going to be nitpicky ones because the game is truly one of the best Iíve played in the last couple years.  But here they are anyway.

- The gadgets:  Itís awesome that they added more gadgets, Iím sure everyone expected more and would have been disappointed if they werenít included.  And they dev team dutifully made each gadget have at least one required use so you donít feel like youíre wasting your time carrying it.  But the sheer number of them, even with the attempts to have quick use shortcuts, makes managing them in a fight often counterintuitive.

-  The Riddler Trophies:  I loved the riddler trophy mechanic in the first game.  And truth be told I like the Riddler puzzle rooms that you unlock in the course of this game.  The final encounter with the Riddler is fun and the fact that you can interrogate his agents to get clues was a nice addition and added a level of strategy to fights where they appeared (you could only interrogate them if they were the last man standing.)  But 440 trophies/challenges to unlock all the Riddler encounters?  Just a tad insane.  Settle down Riddler.  Scouring the city for these things really affected the pacing of the game which I didnít feel they did in the original. 

-  Breaking Character:  Something that pissed me off, and Iíll avoid going into too much detail for spoilers, was a moment Batman blatantly lied to get something he wanted.  Not something Batman typically does.  They then proceed to draw even more attention to it by having him espouse to another character how much his word is worth later.  It just bugged me.

-  The challenge maps:  Theyíre tedious and I hate them. 

Final score:  A-  I canít call it perfection but itís damn close.
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