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Pokemon Sun/Moon Review (3DS)

Here we are in 2016, 20 years since the release of Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue. Who would’ve thought that what was supposed to be a fad would last this long. With each iteration to the Pokémon franchise come new Pokémon, a new location, and a new adventure. Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon is no exception to that. Here we are taking a refreshing look at the newest iteration to the Pokémon franchise.

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Mario Party Star Rush Review (3DS)

I’ve had a love/hate relationship with the Mario Party series over the years. Some of them have been great (I’m looking at you 2, 4, and 6). Some of them have been not so great (see 9 and 10). The last few felt limited and while Nintendo tried to streamline the whole system they just didn’t feel much like a party and more like a forced socialization. They’ve never really been terrible, but some of them just haven’t been much fun. Mario Party Star Rush is hoping that the changes will bring people back to the party, but did it work?

In short the answer is yes. In the games “Main Mode”, which is called Toad Scramble, gone are the straight, Monopoly style follow the path board games and in are more open checkers or chess style board. You can go anywhere you want and Nintendo has tried to get you to explore the boards by putting enticing bonuses randomly around the playing area. The whole point of the game, like always is to collect the most stars. How you go about that now is completely different than the way it’s been in the past. Previously once you reached a star space on a board you pay your alloted number of coins and you get said star. Now everyone gets the chance to compete, but the person who gets there first has some advantage over everyone else.

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Paper Mario Color Splash Review (Wii U)

I’m one of the people that was worried when Paper Mario: Color Splash was shown off. I was disappointed by Sticker Star on the 3DS and was dreading another game in that vein. The card system for battling was back. It didn’t look like there was going to be much in the way of RPG elements and it seemed like it was going to be a generic adventure game. Despite that I was still saying that the game deserved a chance to stand on its own and people needed to wait until the game was out to pass judgement. I’m glad to see it’s a good thing I came into the game with an open mind, because it’s actually really good.

Let’s just get this out of the way now and address the elephant in the room. The battle system from Sticker Star still remains. It’s been tweaked some, but it’s still the card based system that was introduced in that game. At the beginning of each turn you choose a series of cards that you’ll play. These can range from traditional jump and hammer attacks to fire and ice flower power ups or you can even attack with Koopa Troopas or Shy Guys. The order that you place these cards on the screen will be the order that you carry them out in. You need to make sure to plan ahead and really know how much damage will be dealt with each card. If you’re careless you could end up jumping on top of spiked enemies or throwing fireballs at Paratroopas. Those attacks would be wasted and could even damage Mario in the process.

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Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice Review (3DS)

I really enjoy the Sonic Boom television show. I think it’s fun, clever and just a really enjoyable experience to watch with my kids. I thought the first game on DS wasn’t that bad either. It felt like the developers at Sega were trying to get back to what made Sonic fun. There were hints back then of things that really made the game feel like a Sonic game and I thought with another go at it the series could be really good. Well, the developers are back at it with Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice on the 3DS, and unfortunately it feels like more of the same, yet again.

The game goes along with the animated series of the same name. Sonic and his crew of friends spend their days fighting Dr. Eggman and his group of robotic baddies. In this case Eggman has found a new source of power called ragnium and he’s mining the world for the element. It’s causing fissures to open up on various islands around the world. Sonic, Tails, Amy and the rest all have to team up and work together to close those fissures so they don’t destroy their home.

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Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse Review (3DS)

Shin Megami Tensei IV was a bit of a breath of fresh air when it was released three years ago. A darker, more ‘realistic’ RPG on the 3DS where the characters felt human and less like an anime cast. It was the first game in the SMT main series in over a decade. This game takes the story from that previous game, continues where it left off and streamlines a lot of the mechanics present in that game. It all makes for a much improved experience on an already stellar game.

SMTIV: Apocalypse is a sort of pseudo-sequel / side story to the original game released back in 2013. The events of this game take place about three-fourths of the way through the original. You see Flynn and his crew of samurai as they are finishing up their fight to save Tokyo and the world. From there you are cast into the role of Nanashi, a teenager who has aspirations to help save the world as well. The game takes place a number of years after the events of the first one and many of the things we take for granted today have become lost to time and regarded as legend by some people. You, and your friend Asahi join a group of fighters called Hunters. They work on the edges of the fight to help Flynn. Occasionally your paths cross and Flynn will help you. You work to make Tokyo livable amongst the fight between angels and demons.

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice Review (3DS)

In a land far, far away where attorneys are all but a myth and prosecutors reign free.  Where those who proclaim innocence are silenced by the legal system.  There exists one man who will stand in the way.  A man out for justice, not for one, but for all.  And his name is… Phoenix Wright. Continue reading “Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice Review (3DS)”

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The Legend of Kusakari Review (3DS)

Every once in a while a game comes along that’s just so wacky, weird or unusual that it can only be one of two things. It’s either incredibly fun and you spend far more time on the game than you think or it just falls apart and turns out that the concept just doesn’t work. Legend of Kusakari from Nnooo is just one of those games. Luckily this one happens to fall into the former category rather than the latter, because I had a really good time with the game.

On it’s surface, if you just look at gameplay trailers or screenshots it looks almost like a clone of games like the Legend of Zelda. If you took the game just from those still images alone it doesn’t look like much. However, when you see the game in motion and actually play it you realize it’s something far different.

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Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE Review (Wii U)

Battle Mirages as they try to steal Performa from the world, all while keeping up with your dance lessons and recording you new hit single. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE Review Game purchased from retail, DLC purchased from the eShop Played through the story, did all side-stories and most of the side requests Total Play Time: 90 hours Continue reading Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE Review (Wii U)

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Hatsune Miku: Project Diva X Review (PS4)

Rhythm games come in a lot of different shapes and sizes. From the screen tapping, stylus swirling game play of the Elite Beat Agents game to the frantic, sweat-inducing dancing of they DDR games to the pulse pounding drum play of the Taiko no Tatsujin games to the straight up button mashing of the Hatsune Miku series. There’s a rhythm game out there for everyone. I’ve played a lot of them because I really like music. I like rhythm. I like the combination of the two. Project Diva X is the most recent game in this vocaloid series.

The story of the game is just cheesy. I didn’t like it. I didn’t think it needed to be there. Sure, it’s fun to see the characters interacting with each other; Miku, Rin and Luka get very excited about the idea of forming a rock band together, but ultimately it’s just there to provide some reason to break the songs in the game up into different styles. See, in the game you’re supposed to reconnect five different clouds of music together and to do that you have to “learn” about each of the different styles and how to best embody that type of music. I found myself groaning at the saccarin-sweetness of the whole thing. It’s really, cheesy y’all. In it’s defense many rhythm games try to inject a story where one isn’t really needed and most of them revolve around saving the world through the power of dance. This one is no different.

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King of Fighters XIV Review (PS4)

King of Fighters XIV is my first foray into the franchise.  Previous to this I’ve spent a lot of time with Street Fighter and other game such as Tatsunoko vs Capcom, Brutal: Paws of Fury or Smash Brothers.  Outside of that my knowledge of fighting games is pretty limited.  I don’t consider a match here or there in games to really constitute experience with those franchises.  Sometimes it’s good to get the opinion of someone new to a series because, while they can’t tell you the intricacies of everything that franchise offers they can tell you just how accessible a game is to new players, something all fighting games need to keep their communities growing.

I’ve been playing fighting games since the days of the original Street Fighter (or Fighting Street) in the arcade.  I found my time with King of Fighters to be very enjoyable.  I played the game entirely using a controller as I do not own a fighting stick for the PS4.  You could definitely call me a casual fighting game fan, but from what I experienced I think anyone, casual or veteran alike, is going to enjoy the most recent entry into the series.

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