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[Review] Sonic Mania

Posted on 1 week ago by (@P_Trah) in Reviews, Switch | 14 Comments | 0 Likes

System: Switch
Release date: August 15, 2017
Developer: Headcannon / PagodaWest Games
Publisher: SEGA


Sonic the Hedgehog is a series that’s both famous and infamous for many different reasons. In his hay-day, Sonic was perhaps the number one rival to Nintendo’s best known character, Mario. During Sonic’s early days on the SEGA Genesis, or the SEGA Mega Drive for those outside of the U.S., the Sonic the Hedgehog titles received high praise from all over game’s media, and was seen by most critics as SEGA’s answer to Mario’s popularity. This success continued throughout Sonic’s 2D era of games, with subsequent entries receiving just as much, if not more praise than the last. However, once SEGA decided to make the jump from 2D to 3D, opinions regarding the changes to the series’ core became a bit more polarizing. Some critics and fans regarded the changes as a necessity to move forward in-step with the evolving industry; while others felt that the series was straying too far from the its roots and was starting to water-down what made Sonic the Hedgehog appealing to begin with. Over the years, SEGA has attempted to bring the series back to its roots in several ways, but none have ever quite captured that same magic that fans were hoping for. That is, until Sonic Mania.

[Review] Hey! Pikmin

Posted on 3 weeks ago by (@P_Trah) in 3DS, Reviews | 7 Comments | 0 Likes

System: 3DS
Release date: July 28, 2017
Developer:: Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo


Genre-altering spinoffs are not an entirely new concept in the gaming world, especially when it comes to Nintendo. Sometimes taking an existing IP and changing its genre and play style can breathe new life into a series; other times (more often than not it seems) it can work against the franchise and can leave fans of a certain series wanting a bit more than what was presented. In Hey! Pikmin for the 3DS, we see Nintendo and developer Arzest try and introduce those adorable sentient carrots and our intrepid, inter-galactic delivery man to Nintendo’s handheld. While Hey! Pikmin has plenty of the same charm that the mainline console Pikmin titles have, it lacks the depth and strategy that fans have come to admire the series for.

[Review] Miitopia

Posted on 3 weeks ago by (@LyonHart_) in 3DS, Reviews | 8 Comments | 0 Likes

System: 3DS
Release date: July 28, 2017
Developer:: Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo


Miis have seen a long history of games and appearances ranging from party titles like Wii Play and Wii Sports to spinoff Mario titles such as Mario Kart and Mario Tennis. Now from a fancy island resort in 2013’s quirky Tomodachi Life to the fantasy wonderlands of an RPG, Miitopia sees Nintendo’s Mii avatars come front and center once again on the 3DS. Miitopia builds ground and gives Miis a more robust experience compared to the simulator nature of Tomodachi Life, but it falls short in many areas to really make this a game worth owning, even if it is just as fun and absurd as one would expect from a Mii driven title – for better or for worse.

[Review] Splatoon 2

Posted on 1 month ago by in Reviews, Switch | 16 Comments | 0 Likes

System: Switch
Release date: July 21, 2017
Developer: Nintendo
Publisher Nintendo


One of the best things about the original Splatoon when it first rolled onto store shelves a few years back was how it was never afraid to be itself. When creating a new IP, Nintendo didn’t choose to play it safe and instead provided completely new gameplay we had never seen before and a booming world to dive into like no other. It’s no wonder fans took an immediate liking to the concept, and throughout its near two years of support, players kept coming back. It makes perfect sense that Nintendo rolled out a sequel just in time for the Switch’s first year to put a “fresh” IP in the spotlight once again, but does this sequel provide enough to justify the 2, or does it provide “2” little?

[Review] Ever Oasis

Posted on 2 months ago by in 3DS, Reviews | 39 Comments | 0 Likes

System: 3DS
Release date: June 23, 2017
Developer:: Grezzo
Publisher: Nintendo


At E3 last year, Nintendo showcased a brand new 3DS game from Grezzo. An action RPG curated by the team that gave us the Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask remakes, Ever Oasis gives us a look into the developer’s own original ideas and concepts and very much showcases what they can do. Is this creative idea enough to revive life into the 3DS, or should everybody find their own oasis back on the Switch?

[Review] RPG Maker Fes

Posted on 2 months ago by (@LyonHart_) in 3DS, Reviews | 28 Comments | 0 Likes

System: 3DS
Release date: June 27, 2017
Developer: Kadokawa / Jupiter
Publisher NIS America


For those who are unfamiliar, RPG Maker may seem like a brand new game coming to the 3DS, but really it’s a creation tool meant to give easy access to those that want to make simple RPGs and get into the realm of game development. The series has had a long history in video games, first being released in the early 90s, and is still heavily used to this day and frequently associated with short, indie titles typically released on digital outlets on PC. However, well-known games have also been made in RPG Maker such as Corpse Party, To The Moon, Aveyond, and much more. There are even quite a few RPG Maker-created titles currently available on 3DS. Though mostly a PC program, RPG Maker FES makes its way over to 3DS to give players their own chance at creating whatever it is they’d like using their stylus as their paint brush, and their mind as the ink. RPG Maker, like most engines and tools on PC, can get extremely deep in its technicality depending on how much one is trying to implement and achieve with their title, but does that flexibility and the power of PCs translate well to 3DS? Surprisingly, very much so.

[Review] ARMS

Posted on 2 months ago by (@P_Trah) in Reviews, Switch | 18 Comments | 0 Likes

System: Switch
Release date: June 16, 2017
Developer: Nintendo
Publisher Nintendo


It feels commonplace with Nintendo to expect at least one new first-party IP to follow the most recent console launch. Enter ARMS, Nintendo’s latest original game, and their take on a more competitive-styled fighter. Nintendo has had experience with the fighting game genre in the past with the Smash Bros. series, but instead of leaning more towards the party-style that has been the intended main focus Smash Bros., ARMS seems to lend itself to a more competitive one-on-one style of fighting game in the vein of Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat while still maintaining the big N’s signature twist on a traditional genre.

[Review] Disgaea 5 Complete

Posted on 2 months ago by (@LyonHart_) in Reviews, Switch | 7 Comments | 0 Likes

System: Switch
Release date: May 23, 2017
Developer: Nippon Ichi Software
Publisher NIS America


Since its initial launch in 2003, Disgaea has been a flagship series for Nippon Ichi Software – even using Prinny as a mascot – and continues to be nearly 15 years later, having multiple spinoffs and branching off into other mediums such as anime adaptations and manga. What’s made the franchise so great and successful over the years is that not only has it touched multiple platforms on both console and handhelds, but it’s had fun and engaging gameplay that goes beyond the typical layout and flow of a strategy RPG, bringing along a great cast of characters, settings, art, and music to boost. Now Disgaea 5 Complete is making the series’ return to Nintendo consoles on the Switch for the first time since Disgaea DS back in 2008, and packs in all DLC from the original release. Despite the game itself being nearly two years old at this point, it offers those who have held out or simply never jumped into a Disgaea game before a chance to give it a shot. And even though Disgaea isn’t always associated with Nintendo, Disgaea 5 Complete feels comfortable and right at home on Switch, giving RPG and SRPG enthusiasts alike a great new title to get their hands on and delve into.

System: Switch
Release date: May 26, 2017
Developer:: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom


Chances are nowadays that when you talk to someone about fighting games, one of the first titles to come to mind is Street Fighter. The series has spanned decades, with 2017 marking its 30th anniversary which is further celebrated with the updated release of one of the most seminal fighting games of all time, Street Fighter II. Before the imminent release of Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers on Switch, the game had already returned many times in the past. To some this may seem excessive, but for the most hardcore of Street Fighter fans, it’s a way to continually preserve the history of one of the most successful fighting game franchises of all time, as well as one of the most important titles in the series. However you look at it, Ultra Street Fighter II has a lot to love about it if you’re an avid Street Fighter fan, but may leave a lot to be desired to those looking to jump in for the first time or have casually spent time with the series over the last three decades.

System: 3DS
Release date: May 19, 2017
Developer:: Intelligent Systems
Publisher: Nintendo


As an avid Fire Emblem fan, I have a lot of respect for how far the series has come, especially considering that Awakening was supposed to be the final entry. It’s clear that the new direction for these games clicked very well with western players, breathing new life into a tired chain of tactical RPGs. If essentially “waifu-ing” Fire Emblem up and making the games overall easier to play meant I could still get my Fire Emblem fix every other year, then so be it. However, with Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentina, the developers decided to draw the series back to its roots by remaking the Japan-exclusive Famicom game Fire Emblem Gaiden.

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