Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Final Fantasy 6 for the SNES, PS, and GBA review




As you all know, one of my favorite games of all time is Final Fantasy 9. I have even admitted that Final Fantasy 9 was better than 7 as the best game in the franchise. However, it’s not that I don’t like any other Final Fantasy, it’s just that 9 was very close to my heart when I was growing up. Back then, I didn’t even know where to find the other games in the series. This was when I was just a guy trying out different games. I wanted to become an artist, but now that I am into games, I have been trying to find the Final Fantasy games that I want to play for myself. One of them, which I have been looking for, was Final Fantasy 6, which was one of the last great SNES games. I have recently picked it up, but not in cart form. I picked up the game with Final Fantasy 5 that were both part of the Final Fantasy Anthology for the Playstation. I have been playing this game for a while, and it is now my second favorite Final Fantasy game.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Uncharted 2: Among Theives for the PS3 review

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves Pictures, Images and Photos

2009, while having a lot of great games, wasn’t as big as 2007, with releases like Super Mario Galaxy and Bioshock to name a few that defined 2007. However, we did get a lot of A-list titles like Infamous, Prototype, Punch Out!!, Ratchet and Clank Future: a Crack in Time, Muramasa: the Demon Blade, New Super Mario Brothers Wii, Left 4 Dead 2, Brutal Legend, Assassin’s Creed 2, and of course, Batman Arkham Asylum. While those are all great games in their respective genre, one game kind of took over the spotlight for the title for Game of the Year. What is this game that took the world and critics by storm as the best game of 2009? Well, this title is just simply known as Sonic and the Black Knight. No, I’m kidding. That game sucked. The actual name of the game is called Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. I have never seen such critical acclaim for a third person shooter. I mean, I enjoyed the first Uncharted even with its small faults that held it back, but check these awards out that this game has won. Best PS3 game of E3 2009 by 1UP.com, Best Third Person Shooter, Best Graphics, Best Story, and Best Single Player Campaign by Gametrailers.com, and multiple Game of the Year awards from other sites and magazines. Gosh dang, this game better be as amazing as everyone says it is. Let’s dive right into what people consider one of the single best PS3 games of all time.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Thoughts on Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom and The Last Guardian

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Now, a lot of great games have come out in 2010 and many of them are really good! I mean, we have hits like Bayonetta, Darksiders, No More Heroes 2, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, Heavy Rain, God of War 3, Red Dead Redemption, 3D Dot Game Heroes, and Super Mario Galaxy 2 as some of great games we have gotten. However, two games have caught my attention since some criticism has come towards these two games because of some similarities to each other. While I don’t want to point fingers at people, thinking they are too harsh, here are my thoughts and argument for Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom and The Last Guardian.

The main criticism I have heard is that the two games have similar stories. However, let’s take a look at each of the stories from each game. The first one we will talk about is The Last Guardian. The main story revolves around the relationship of a young boy and a giant griffin-like beast named Trico or Toriko in Japan. The young boy releases the creature, and they both must escape a ruined kingdom that is guarded by some soldiers of some kingdom. We don’t know a lot about the story, and we all probably know what’s going to happen to the cute little, well, large creature. I want to talk more about it, but for some reason they are not showing us a lot. It kind of sucks, but it makes the anticipation that much better. Now, the story of Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom is a little more revealed than The Last Guardian. A thief has wandered into a forsaken kingdom, hence the title. He then finds that a large creature called a Majin is trapped, and the thief releases him from his slumber. First of all, this creature looks like he needs to be in Where The Wild Things Are. He has a very simple mind and does have a name, but I forgot what his name was, sorry! They find out that the Majin doesn’t remember a lot, and many of his powers were taken away. They also find out that a slimy tar-like creature that looks like some of the villains in Nier are all over the kingdom. They both must escape and make it out alive. While they both have stories very similar to each other, they are going to be unique in their own way, which brings me up to the game play or what everyone’s thoughts are about it.

Tatsunoko vs Capcom for the Wii review

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So yeah, Marvel vs. Capcom 3 was announced. You know, it’s no big deal. Just a sequel to one of the most critically acclaimed fighting games of all time. You know, a little over 50 characters and so many super moves to try out. It’s definitely not one of the most important things in the news of 2010. OH MY GOD! This is going to be the greatest fighting game of all time! I mean, I am so freaking happy that it has gotten announced. I am so flying off the wall excited since I LOVED playing Marvel vs. Capcom 2 in the arcades with my friends, and I plan on downloading and reviewing it on my PS3 from the PSN. Sadly, I have to wait till Spring 2011, which is stupid. I say that since it’s one of my favorite games of all time right next to Final Fantasy 9, Rival Schools, and Super Mario Galaxy. I guess for the time being, I can review another Capcom fighting game. I know there was a fighting game released this year. I know it’s a new entry to a franchise they like to do. It’s very popular and I know a lot of people love the game. Hmm, what was it? If I can just put my finger on it. Oh yeah! Tatsunoko vs. Capcom! Seen as the second best fighting game on the Wii next to Super Smash Brothers Brawl, this was an interesting case since it wasn’t originally supposed to come here, like Namco vs. Capcom. America would have to deal with the whole licensing issues for the entire Tatsunoko side of the game. However, in the sacrifice of one Tatsunoko character and animated endings, we get new characters for each side, a multi-player 2D shooter, and the fighting system got fixed so it won’t be as cheap as the Japanese version. Let’s get our fighting spirit up and running. and blast through Tatsunoko vs. Capcom.

While there is no need to explain a story for a fighting game that is just crazy like Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, I am going to give my own thought of the story. The dark lord Yami just got so tired from waiting for the next Okami game not counting the one coming out for the DS, he decided to screw around with dimensions. He decided to mess around with the Capcom universe, thrusting it into the Tatsunoko universe. Now the two universes must stop whoever decided to screw with them and get back to their dimensions. I know it’s a stupid sounding story, but hey, it’s a fighting game. Do we actually care? No, we don’t. Just a quick thought, I find it funny how both universes want to stop Yami and they just beat each other up to get to him, instead of just joining up together. That is just my thought.

The game play featured in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is a two-on-two team fighting game, kind of like the Marvel vs. Capcom franchise. You basically choose two characters from the two respective universes, unless you’re using either of the two large characters where you can only choose to be one character. The game play is classic vs. Capcom fighting, where you don’t need to be strategic with your moves like Samurai Shodown or the Street Fighter series. You do have your assortment of super moves and crazy ultra super moves that are pretty fun to watch. Some of my favorite finishers are Frank West and Tekkaman Blade’s finisher since it just looks painful to get hit by some of them. There are some new additions, like a move called the “crossover Air Raid” where you can summon your second character during a mid-air combo, which becomes useful for characters that are best with mid-air combos. The second new move is the “Baroque Cancel” where you can sacrifice the red part of your recovering health bar to extend your combos and increase your damage from your moves. They can also do a “Mega Crash” move where it takes away a bit of your health and energy bar to defect the lengthy super combos. I actually fell victim to some of these, and it gets annoying when you have very little health. When you read the credits, you can play a mini-game, where you play as Doronjo and her henchmen to get special letters to spell out “Thank You For Playing” to get a special top-down shooter mini-game. You can even play online with different people, which the Japanese version doesn’t have. In a way, the Americans got the better game.

The graphics, while not as good looking as Super Street Fighter 4, are pretty impressive-looking graphics. All the Tatsunoko characters have great designs and are really fun to play as. Some of my favorite characters are Yataman-1, Casshan, Tekkaman Blade, Tekkaman, and Hurricane Polimar. Some of my favorite characters to play as in the Capcom side are Frank West, Zero, Batsu, Ryu, and the robot from Lost Planet. Overall, they have a great cast of characters, and I hope some of the Capcom characters appear in the newly announced Marvel vs. Capcom 3. The music is standard fighting fare. It’s mostly pop music where it’s very hyper and energetic. Overall, it’s a great fighting package for the Wii.

Now it’s time to punch our way through the bad parts of the game. While playing this game, I never once played online, knowing that people are going to resort to using the baroque thing over and over, and I heard it gets annoying since that’s what a lot of players online do. I also think the final boss, Yami is very cheap in his third form. It just seems like he can pull off much more tedious and stronger moves that you can’t do a single thing about it. It’s even worse if you are playing as one of the two giant fighters since they are just big walking punching bags. While playing as Gold Lightan from the Tatsunoko side, I had to go through multiple continues right before, by some pure luck, got out alive during the final part. Coming back to Gold Lightan, I wish he had more moves. I can understand that he is using moves he used in the show, but they are more tedious to use against fighters like Yami. It just makes the last boss fight more annoying than a good fight. I also find the mini-game in the credit sequence overly irritating. It just seems more annoying since if you miss ONE letter you don’t get the mini-game. Why can’t I just get it after unlocking all the characters? It would make it easier, but I still haven’t been able to get it and it makes me mad since it always seems like there is that one letter that you need, but for some reason, you can’t get it. Man, is it ever so annoying.

Overall though, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is probably the second best fighting game next to Super Smash Brothers Brawl on the Wii. If you can get this game for a good price, I say pick it up. I would pick Super Smash Brothers Brawl since you can play with four people and not just two people and have to worry about Internet connections for Tatsunoko vs. Capcom. And before you guys email me, I know that Super Smash Brothers Brawl has bad connections also. Hopefully, in the future, Capcom can make another Tatsunoko vs. Capcom game. Go get it and have a blast.

This game gets a 9.5 out of 10

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

New Super Mario Brothers Wii for the umm Wii review

New super Mario Brothers Wii Pictures, Images and Photos

With the recent release of Super Mario Galaxy 2, which has gotten universally praised ratings like perfect 10s and 9 out of 10s. I decided to review one of the other recent Mario games for the Wii. Now I know this game has already come out, but due to other games taking up my time, I haven’t been able to fully enjoy this game. Of course this game I’m talking about is the well received and multiple time winner of Best Wii Game of 2009, New Super Mario Brothers Wii. A lot of people including me were very excited to finally see a 2.5D Mario game that was coming out for a console since it brings back Mario to his old roots as a 2D platforming genius. I might be bias, but a lot of games of today kind of owe it to Mario for bringing in the genre. Sonic wouldn’t be around, Splosion Man wouldn’t be around, and even Wario wouldn’t be around. So lets go down the green pipe and find out why this game is so awesome. I easily could have used one of the horrible jokes from the Mario cartoon show of the 80’s, but I think that would have killed the review.

The main story of this Mario game is to no surprise of any Mario fan. Princess Peach is celebrating her birthday, as she is about to enjoy her cake, Bowser Jr. then appears and is not alone. He is joined by Bowser’s other kids…wait WHAT?! The children of Bowser who haven’t appeared in a video game since Super Mario Brothers 3 on the NES are finally back?! Holy cow that is awesome! I mean you could count that they were in a pile of crap third party made CDI game, Hotel Mario, but who cares! They are in an actual Mario game and it’s been like a zillion years! Now that I got that out of my system. I know Mario games don’t have a strong story, but its Mario. Don’t get me wrong, I love games like Heavy Rain or Batman: Arkham Asylum or any game with a strong story, but there is a certain charm with Mario games since they don’t have long winded stories and stupid easy to see plot twists. Then again why would you need an epic tale of a princess getting kidnapped by some evil beast? I mean its not like Nintendo doesn’t have an epic adventure game where you are sent to save the princess. Oh wait that’s Nintendo’s other big franchise Zelda.

The game play is classic 8-bit and 16-bit Mario, a 2.5D platformer. The whole game takes place on a map like Super Mario Brothers 3 and Super Mario World. There are about 8 maps including a secret 9th world if you get all the star coins. You basically can go through this game alone and get through the game fine. You can do something better and go through the game with a second player, but not like the old games on the NES and SNES. This time you can play with up to 4 people at the same time! This has never been done before and I thought it was a good idea. You will hear more of what I think later in the review. Of course with every Mario game, there are power ups. You get the basic mushroom and fire flower. This time though you get a lot of cool ones like the propeller mushroom that gives you a propeller suit and can give you an extra boost of flight. You can also dive bomb enemies. You also get the tiny mushroom that turns Mario tiny and can get through special areas and can run on water and jump pretty high in the air. This happens to be my new favorite mushroom since me and my cousin played through a level with it and it was fun as it can be being tiny. There is also an ice flower form the Galaxy games, but its more like the fire flower suit wise where you can throw ice balls to freeze enemies and use them as projectiles or plat forms. The final new power up is the penguin suit where you can also throw ice balls, but you can swim easier and slide on your belly on ice. It’s really fun when you get it down. There are other things like invincibility stars, POW blocks, and a propeller block that can be a substitute propeller mushroom. The main motion controls is basically limited to where you can shake the remote to make you spin in the air, guide a flash light, and move platforms. You basically do stuff like collect coins and special star coins that unlock special videos of certain levels.

The graphics and the look of the game is very outstanding. The 2D look of the game has been locked in a safe for a decade or so and it hasn’t looked better. The music is also very enjoyable with remix of favorite tunes of the Mario library. The difficulty of the game is just right. It isn’t too easy, but it is somewhat hard. Though it kind of cancels itself out because it’s mimicking the difficulty form the old Mario side-scroller games. A special thing that was implemented into the game is a guide called the Super Guide. It unlocks if you die about 8 times on one level. If you activate it, the computer plays through the game as Luigi. Yeah you lose a little of your pride, but it helps when you need to get through the game.

Sadly, I wish this was a perfect game, but it isn’t. There are a few things I just
don’t like. First off are the playable characters. Why Toad? Why not Donkey Kong or Wario? No one wants to play as a freaking Toad. They should have added unlockable characters or somehow got Wario and Donkey Kong through the story or something. My next complaint comes from the difficulty of some levels. Sometimes it’s just tedious to get through a level from time to time, but like I said earlier, it kind of cancels itself out. my final complaint comes from playing with 4 people. it gets a little chaotic. I can understand where Nintendo was coming from with this idea, but it gets annoying since someone can be a total jerk and get the rest killed.

All and all, New Super Mario Brothers Wii is one of the best if not the 3rd best wii game of all time. I say go buy it! It’s a fun game to play with two people and three people. I think they should make a sequel to this game. Please Nintendo do this and I will be a happy reviewer/gamer. Thanks for reading and make sure to send me an email of a game you want me to review or recommend at moonstone140@gmail.com. See you all next time!

This game gets a 9.4 out of 10