Retro City Rampage works as an always funny parody of Grand Theft Auto and classic games. But it's much more than that. There's some devilishly clever content here, including a solid action game with consistently humorous writing. Not every joke lands, but the experience is so dense with ridiculous fun that it's impossible to imagine somebody not having a good time with Retro City Rampage!
Silent Hill: Book of Memories is full of firsts. It's the first multi-player game in the series and the first to incorporate top-down dungeon crawler mechanics. Unfortunately, it's also the first game to make me want to throw my PS Vita out the window. Gamers will have a good time in small groups, but anybody hoping to go it alone should look elsewhere!
If it's Friday it's This Week in Defunct Games! This week we're looking at some very familiar games. Two of the three games have already been reviewed on This Week in Defunct Games. Expect to feel that sense of deja vu when you read my reviews of Shock Troopers and Ghosts 'N Goblins. And then, just for fun, we take a look at Castlevania: The Adventure, one of Konami's earliest Game Boy games. It's an episode full of scary surprises just in time for Halloween!
Shock Troopers may not plow original ground, but it does have enough new ideas to warrant the nine dollar price tag. If you're a fan of Commando, MERCs or Ikari Warriors, then you owe it to yourself to play one of the best examples of the genre. The gameplay may not be very deep, but I have a hunch you'll be blown away by the amount of content found in this tiny download. Shock Troopers is definitely worth picking up if you're into overhead shoot-em-ups.
I'm sure there are people out there that would argue that the platforming adds a necessary challenge. It doesn't. It's an artificial way to make the game harder, and it ultimately benefits nobody. On the 3DS, you can quick save along the way. While this makes the game more fun, it also means that you'll beat it in no time. I can certainly see what Konami was trying to accomplish with Castlevania: The Adventure, but it's a frustrating mess that, like Dracula, should be avoided.
While I'm partial to the 16-bit sequels, there's no denying that Ghosts 'N Goblins remains a great action game. It's also tough and devilishly unfair. On the Nintendo 3DS, you can chip away at the story little by little, making this a much more manageable port. Forget Castlevania and make Ghosts 'N Goblins your portable Halloween game of choice.
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 10) - Welcome to the 1990s! That's right, our journey through every Nintendo Power cover has brought us to the January/February 1990 issue. And what better way to celebrate the 1990s than to put a picture of Batman (the biggest star of 1989) on the cover. Good thing there's an explanation for this weirdness. Unfortunately, the cover still sucks. See what I mean when you read another exciting episode of Nintendo Power Uncovered!
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 9) - We're just speeding through these Nintendo Power covers. Believe it or not, this is the magazine's final issue of the 1980s. The 1990s will bring us the Super NES, Nintendo 64 and Virtual Boy. But let's not get ahead of ourselves, because we still have a decade to send off. Let's do it in style with this Tetris cover!
Game Expectancy (Ep. 12) - Have you ever wondered how old your favorite video game character will be when they die? Defunct Games puts that question to the test. By studying the lives of gaming's biggest stars, we are able to accurately predict when they'll croak. Today we're starting a brand new season of Game Expectancy with John Carlton, who is better known as Johnny Cage from Mortal Kombat. Will he die young or live into his 80s? Find out now when you read our season premiere of Game Expectancy!
If it's Friday, it's This Week in Defunct Games! This week we mark another milestone. After sixteen months, the Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console finally gets its very own traditional 2D space shoot-em-up. I'm talking about Konami's 1986 classic, Gradius. Is this 8-bit NES port worth buying? Find out now when you read my wishy-washy take on the influential shooter in this new episode of This Week in Defunct Games!
Gradius is a genuine classic. But at the same time, we've seen this NES port before. There are better versions of Gradius on the Nintendo 3DS, making this Virtual Console release questionable. On the other hand, you can't go wrong with one of Konami's most influential games.
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 8) - We're a full month into our lonely journey to review every single Nintendo Power cover. Today we're looking at Duck Tales, which could have been an excuse for the cover department to fall asleep on the job. Thankfully they didn't! Duke Tales is yet another solid cover from Nintendo Power, and now you can see for yourself when you read our full review of the September/October issue of Nintendo Power!
Giant Sparrow delivers one of the most unique games of the year. Sadly, The Unfinished Swan is a little too easy for its own good. Players can easily blow through the game in a couple hours. Still, the game's story is strong enough to keep you engaged from beginning to end. You've never seen anything like The Unfinished Swan before!
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure isn't a bad fighting game, but it may be too weird for its own good. The 22 characters are hard to relate to and the action is often chaotic for no reason. Worse yet, the game is too expensive for the amount of content. If you can get over some of the imperfections you'll find a good looking fighting game with a lot of memorable characters!
Zombie Driver HD plays out like a cross between Grand Theft Auto 2 and Choplifter. Players race around the city picking up survivors and avoiding the zombie hordes. It's a fun game with a surprising amount of content for ten dollars. On the other hand, the missions become a bit tedious by the end. Zombie Driver HD is worth a look!
Commercial Break (Ep. 55) - The Commercial Break is back!! In the first episode in over a year, we take a look at AT&T's radical invention, world domination with Command & Conquer and the terribleness of the U-Force. But wait, there's more! This episode also looks at how Nintendo marketed the Game Boy to non-gamers. The long wait for a new Commercial Break episode is finally over!
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 7) - Mega Man is back with one of the best magazine covers of all time. We're seven issues into our trip through Nintendo Power and there's no sign of slowing down. Today we're checking out the Mega Man II cover, featuring figures that will knock your socks off. This is one of the few times when a magazine cover is actually better than the game's box art!
While not as gripping as the first three episodes, Around Every Corner remains a strong chapter of The Walking Dead. Unfortunately, too much of the game involves new characters that don't seem vital to the end game storyline. Still, this is an episode that sets up what is sure to be an incredible season finale!
You might not know it from the box, but Dead or Alive 5 is one of the most baffling games of the year. It's full of weird editing, ninja clones and large breasted women. And that doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of what makes this game so incomprehensible. Thankfully the solid gameplay and gorgeous graphics make up for the often disjointed story telling!
If you hate sadness and heartache, then Long Road Ahead is not for you. This is a journey fraught with triumphs and setbacks, often happening simultaneously. This is yet another strong episode that reinforces my opinion that The Walking Dead is one of the best games of the year!
Happy Wars is a simple multiplayer action game for the Xbox Live Arcade. While it is rife with problems, it's also a free game that is worth checking out. You won't find anything original here, but the fast-paced action is both chaotic and addictive. Sadly, the game isn't deep enough to keep my interest for very long. Download Happy Wars and see for yourself!
If it's Friday it's This Week in Defunct Games! Ladies and gentlemen, Nintendo has done it. Thanks to the release of The Last Blade II, the Wii Virtual Console has now seen 19 games in 2012, one more than all of 2011. For the first time ever, Nintendo has managed to actually increase their Virtual Console output year over year, and incredible accomplishment. Oh, and they also released Mario Golf on the 3DS Virtual Console, which isn't nearly as big of an accomplishment. Find out what we think of both games when you read another exciting episode of This Week in Defunct Games!
The Last Blade 2 is an absolute must-buy, even with this insane saturation of the fighting game market. Not only is this one of SNK's greatest accomplishments, but it's also a high water mark for the Neo Geo as a platform. Sadly, it's also a gorgeous weapons-based fighter that is destined to, yet again, get lost in a sea full of flashier releases.
Mario Golf is Camelot at their best. It may sound like an unassuming sports game, but Mario Golf delivers hours of enjoyment thanks to the always interesting role-playing elements. The graphics and sound may be 8-bit, but the fun doesn't feel dated at all. Forget the more expensive Nintendo 64 game, this Game Boy Color companion is the real star!
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 6) - Want to know what the worst Nintendo Power cover looks like? It only took us six issues before crowning our first "F" rating! This is the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cover, and it stinks like a sewer. Have we already seen the best from Nintendo Power? Find out what Cyril thinks when you read the sixth installment of Nintendo Power Uncovered!
XCOM: Enemy Unknown is an expertly crafted strategy game that improves on the original in every way. It's a cinematic treat that is accessible enough for gamers of all experience. Best of all, it's not a bore. With more than 70 missions and a competitive two-player mode, XCOM is a high water mark for 2012!
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 5) - According to Nintendo Power, Ninja Gaiden is the "New Hit in Cinema Display" ... whatever that means. He were are starting our third week of Nintendo Power Uncovered. Today we're looking at Ninja Gaiden and the white man with crazy eyes dressed up as Ryu Hayabusa. Find out what Cyril thinks when you read another exciting episode of Nintendo Power Uncovered!
Comic Book Mods (Ep. 19) - It's a good thing Diane found our hero in last week's episode, because now he can get cleaned up and take part in AMERICA'S NEXT TOP GAME JOURNALIST!! This is the very first episode filmed entirely on the reality show, so tune in to see what kind of wild antics the Game Journalist games himself into. Will he get voted out on the first Day? Find out now when you read the second part in our American's Next Top Game Journalist series!
As a Saturn game, NiGHTS into Dreams under-delivered. Sixteen years later it's easy to see why, but that shouldn't keep you from playing through this bizarre dreamscape. Just be ready for some frustrating boss fights and linear flying stages. Find out what Cyril thinks when you read his full review of NiGHTS into Dreams on the Sony PlayStation 3!
If it's Friday it's This Week in Defunct Games! This week we're looking at Nintendo's 25th Virtual Console game for the Nintendo 3DS. With the release of Dr. Mario (Game Boy), Nintendo is just two games shy of matching 2011's output. Find out if this mascot-based puzzler is worth your money when you read our controversial review in a brand new episode of This Week in Defunct Games!
With so many better versions of Dr. Mario available for the Nintendo 3DS, one has to wonder what Nintendo was doing releasing this crummy Game Boy port. Looking back at it now, Dr. Mario is a bad game that somehow got swept up in the excitement surrounding Tetris and the Game Boy. Don't make the same mistake now!
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 4) - Link and Zelda make their first appearance on Nintendo Power! We're four episodes into our 282 episode journey and already we have two costumed covers. Is this a gaming magazine or a romance novel? Find out what Cyril thinks of this Adventures of Link cover when you read his full review of Nintendo Power issue 4!
This is yet another Capcom collection that pits two similar fighting games together for one cheap price. The good news is that both Marvel vs. Capcom and Marvel Super Heroes are great games that hold up well. Unfortunately, the bad news is that you're going to get stomped online. With its creative use of filtering and goals to complete, Marvel vs. Capcom Origins is a must-buy for anybody with an interest in fighting games!
I love elevators. To honor these mechanical marvels, I've decided to make a whole video gushing over some of my favorite elevators. But I'm not talking any old lift. This list is all about classic 2D beat-em-ups at the height of their popularity. I'm talking about 1989 to 1994, back when Final Fight and Streets of Rage were allowed to become trilogies. For a fighting game it was about more than transportation, it was a confined space with enemies lurking everywhere. See for yourself as we count down the Top 20 Lifts in Classic Beat-Em-Ups!
Worms Revolution isn't a bad game, but it's not the best Worms experience on the Xbox Live Arcade. There are a few good ideas, along with some funky physics and water that acts a lot more like The Blob. You may still get some fun out of the multiplayer mode, but Worms fans are better off sticking with Armageddon!
October 02, 2012
Nintendo Power Uncovered (Ep. 3) - We're a full week into our look at every single Nintendo Power cover! Our next stop is issue 3, the first holiday-themed issue of Nintendo Power. So what did they choose for their big November/December cover? Track and Field II! That's right; we get Konami's summer games collection (released in June). Find out what Cyril thinks when you read his full review of Nintendo Power issue 3!
Samurai G could have been about anything -- Godzilla, grandmothers, ghosts or even gangsters. Unfortunately, UFO Interactive decided to make this particular samurai money hungry. Samurai G is an action game full of gold collecting, but the concept gets old far too quickly. If only there was an online leaderboard or a check point system!
Believe it or not, choosing the right location is the most important job when making a Resident Evil game. And it turns out that it's not as easy as it sounds. Already we've been stuck in a creepy mansion, zombie-filled small town, laboratory, Europe, a moving train and on a haunted island. We're fast approaching a time where there won't be any creepy locations left for Resident Evil. But don't worry, because over the past few months Capcom has sent out a group of Resident Evil "experts" to pick the perfect locale for a seventh installment. This is their journey!