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Posted:
2013-05-22

monty

Super Gamer Dude

7.1

The Adventures of Tintin is an action/adventure game released and developed by Ubisoft, and is based on the film of the same name. The game is mainly a platform title.

You get to play as Tintin, Snowy, and in the final battle, Captain Haddock. The game offers a third person view, and not a side scrolling perspective as most platformers do.

Playing as Tintin, a young reporter/journalist who will stop at nothing to get a break on a tasty story, despite the huge amounts of trouble it may cause him. One day he buys a model ship Unicorn on a whim, and shortly after you discover that there is a lot more to this ship than meets the eye, and it is your job to unravel the mystery, as well as to fend off multitudes of bad guys while doing so. Most of the action takes place in mansions, underground caverns, and the deep in bowels of ships.

Tintin's wide array of skills make all these tasks seem simple. Wall climbing, jumping, running, and getting over and around obstacles, are way too smooth and easy, and it never feels like there is an ounce of skill involved in doing so. Some of your movements are automated making it kid friendly, and a breeze for anyone with skills at gaming. This also applies to combat. Pressing one button lets you sail through most enemies without much difficulty, and when tough enemies do arise, you just sneak past them. The Adventures of Tintin tries to shake things up with a few puzzles, but these are also so simplistic! Some of the puzzles include searching for levers to open different pathways, or using weights to get the correct balance on seesaw machines.

In this game you get access to vehicles, but the parts you play with them are too easy as well. You get to pilot a plane through a storm, where you avoid tornadoes and attack other aircraft, but you can do each action with the push of just one button. They also give you a bike, but when you ride on it, it is also very easy to catch other bikes and hit them with your slingshot. And after a couple of hours of playing you will soon start to realize that everything feels familiar. Repetition is huge in this game, and lots of puzzles and vehicle scenes are constantly repeated, making the game very boring.

The Adventures of Tintin is just an average family game, and if you're a serious gamer looking for a challenge you should certainly skip this one. There are plenty of more challenging platform games out there to test your mettle.

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Posted:
2014-01-15

monty

Super Gamer Dude

7.0

Toy Story 3 for the Wii makes good use of the game's license in re-creating an authentic Toy Story 3 gameplay experience. Toy Story 3 is able to create it's own gameplay story while still maintaining relevant story information. Other options integrated into the game along with various game modes make Toy Story 3 a game that sticks true to the series.

In Toy Story 3 players enter the Toy Box story mode in which people are able to choose from either Woody, Buzz Lightyear or even the cowgirl Jessie. The basic synopsis of the game's story is that the main characters of the game interact with their environment in the way the toy or the player would naturally.

This means that the person may spend time updating their town, building extension buildings, paint their town buildings different colors, add a variety of building textures and even add toy landscape features like trees, grass, boulders and more. Players may also enlarge or shrink buildings as they see fit when constructing their town so that they may create their own perfect toy town setting.

While the player is going about their own story, they'll also be challenged with game missions from time to time. When finishing the mission, the person is awarded with different prizes which might be new options for customizing game elements or even gold. There will be times when new story lines within the game branch up and it's up to the player to decide which path they would like to play next. Some moments in the game may have the player racing a toy car around a race course or other times the person might be in the middle of a mission quest that can involve different locations or characters.

Besides updating the town and surrounding areas, people can also purchase new toys from the Toy Catalog. There can be many different types of new toy characters or items that can be bought and integrated into the players "story". There are many other hidden options in the game that will leave the player entertained. Some of the hidden options tie into the main Toy Story 3 scenario such as Sid's Haunted House.

In the game, people can add what are called Deluxe Playsets into the Toy Box story mode. The Deluxe Playsets are collections of toys, buildings and items that go together to create a theme in the story. The Sid's Haunted House is a toy haunted house created by the Sid character from the movie. The Sid's Haunted House integrates new characters, toys and customization settings the player may change.

A fun feature of the game involves giving the player's a hands-on approach when being subjected to a tutorial rather than simply being told what to do or how to perform something. Lastly, Toy Story 3 for Wii gives players a reason to keep coming back to play the game. The free roaming ability with the option to create the player's own story and also encounter a unique Toy Story 3 scenario help to make a truly authentic experience.

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Posted:
2014-03-26

monty

Super Gamer Dude

6.5

Many 3D platformers have been produced for the handheld consoles but there has been a definite lack of these, especially for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, or at least good ones. In the past, the PlayStation systems have had banner franchises like Jak and Daxter or Ratchet and Clank, but those franchises have fallen by the wayside, meaning that anyone who does not own a Nintendo system is often hard pressed to find a 3D platformer to play.

Microsoft in particular has tried to fill this gap in their lineup multiple times, failing more spectacularly every single time. Back in the PS2/Xbox era there was one platformer that came out both places and was actually pretty decent, Pac-Man World. These games were okay, but never really stood out that much.

Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures carries this torch under a different name. Everything about Ghostly Adventures has the makings of a perfectly serviceable 3D platformer, but when you start trying to piece all of the parts together they never quite click together in the way that you would expect them to.

For starters, the developers of Ghostly Adventures decided that they needed to create a story to try and explain why Pac-Man is in a 3D platformer. As might be expected, the story it absolutely terrible, it takes place on a planet named Pac-World and the main villain is named Betrayus. Pac-Man is voiced to sound like a 10 year old child and everyone else surrounding him sounds like they are at about the same age. The voice acting is awful, the story is awful, the character design is awful, everything about the game's aesthetics is just about as bad as it can get.

Even the environments that the levels take place in are about as generic as you could possibly get. Every different type of level feels like it was pulled directly from a 3D platformer checklist. There is a city world, an ice world and a jungle world among others, each with almost the exact same platforming gameplay design in a different set of window dressing.

Sure, aesthetics might make up the vast majority of what makes a 3D platformer stand out from the other ones on the market, but sometimes gameplay can help one of these titles distinguish itself as well. Sadly, Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is not one of those titles. The game is extremely generic in the way it plays, but it does not bear much resemblance to modern 3D platformers.

Instead, Ghostly Adventures seems to deliberately choose to imitate 3D platformers of yore - perhaps the ones that originated the genre. The camera is clunky and unwieldy in a way that I have not seen since the original Spyro games, and the platforming itself does not fare much better.

Sure, Pac-Man Ghostly Adventures is a completely passable game in just about every single way, but that does not excuse it from criticism. Pac-Man was once a franchise that was always making excellent titles, and it seemed like games such as Pac-Man CE DX were going to be a return to those times.

Ghostly Adventures shows that Namco still expects to be able to wring money from a franchise that is losing more and more cache over the years by simply making a bad version of a modern Sonic platformer and slapping Pac-Man in it. This game does nothing to improve the 3D platformer on non-Nintendo platforms, and I honestly can't see a future in which any Pac-Man game does that. If you have kids that are really into Pac-Man, this isn't terrible, but everyone else should stay away.

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Posted:
2013-05-22

monty

Super Gamer Dude

7.2

Nintendo is well known for creating perhaps the greatest platforming series the video game industry has ever seen in Super Mario. So it goes without saying that any other company's platformer has a lot to live up to on a Nintendo console. Despite the extra pressure, Raymnan Origins delivers in spades. The game is one of the most beautiful on Wii, the soundtrack matches up with the game's environment's perfectly, the game's controls are just as good as Super Mario Galaxy or another Nintendo first party title, and the game's co op mode provides hours of entertainment.

Game director Michael Ancel is known for creating beautiful game worlds, see the previous generation's Beyond Good and Evil for reference. Rayman delivers in this department unlike any other non Nintendo developed title on the console. The game is simply vibrant and gorgeous. There's luminous fire, lush plant life and crystal clear water that all unfolds nearly pixel perfect on your screen. Perhaps the only negative thing that could be said is that Rayman is so beautiful it might actually distract you from the gameplay as you stop and stare at your screen in wonder.

The gameplay features all of the power ups and antics the Rayman series is known for. The boss fights are truly epic and there are hidden areas to explore. The game can be challenging at times but if you fail it's your fault, not the controls. The game is spot on in this department, with precision rivaling a Super Mario game.

Perhaps the highlight of the gameplay and maybe even the game itself is Rayman's exciting and zany co op game play. A second player can play along side you but the game has a mischievous side as well. The second player is allowed to slap the first player around and generally just create a nuisance, all in the name of good fun. Playing this game with your sibling might tempers flaring enough to lead to some fisticuffs out in the real world. When the second player actually decides to be helpful however, the control is just as spot on and the gameplay feels incredibly smooth.

Perhaps the only disappointment here is that Nintendo did not make the co op playable online. You'll have to have someone sitting next to you in front of the TV to join in on the fun.

The game's soundtrack is also a treat and can at times match the zany action on screen. Some of the secondary characters could use a little work on their voice acting, but all in all the audio compliments the game perfectly.

If nothing else, Rayman succeeds in being a terrific throwback to a more innocent time in the video game industry. We live in a world where 12 years old curse at each other as they trade headshots in mature titles like Call of Duty. Rayman reminds us just how much fun classic platforming in a beautiful world can be, just like a classic Nintendo title.

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Posted:
2013-05-22

monty

Super Gamer Dude

7.2

When it comes to popular fitness games Just Dance 4 for the Wii must rate as pretty average among a pretty bad bunch. The basic recipe is simple and is used by many titles, you get some exercise and hopefully keep fit by dancing to music, its not rocket science.

The immediate aim of the game is to copy the moves of the dancer on the screen, with the Wii control in hand to sense your movements. Your accuracy in following the on screen dance moves is measured by signals sent back to the game by your in hand Wii controller. The game is so simple that an explanation here is really not needed.

Each song has a different backdrop and this is supposed reflect the mood of the song and to some little extent it does so, with a little imagination on the player's part. Flashing lights recreate a club atmosphere and each attempt of the dancer is met by a round of applause at the end.

Perhaps the most important and entertaining part of the game is the song selection. This offers some of the best choices from recent top ten charts, but then so do most other games in this genre.

The only saving grace of this type of game is the element of competition which has been introduced, giving some incentive to the players to make some sort of effort, and creating some sort of party atmosphere, but I think that the party atmosphere needs to be there in the first place before anyone is likely to want to take part. Without the element of competition you might just as well turn on your radio of CD player and dance along.

I am sure these games are aimed at teenage or pre-teen girls, and there is nothing wrong in that, and so perhaps I am not the best person to commentate on this particular game, being neither teen, pre-teen or female, so I will give a rating from the perspective of its target audience, who will almost certainly mark it higher than me, and doing so, I think it is probably worth a seven from ten.

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Posted:
2013-05-22

monty

Super Gamer Dude

7.4

If what Darksiders says is to be believed, then the end of the world isn't necessarily going to happen by a strange burst of burning white light. Rather, it will be signalled by the arrival of very angry winged angels and some arbiters or doom, wearing really heavy armour, that signal the doom of mankind and the world as you know it.

This may seem like an unoriginal amalgam of so many elements that you may have encountered in other games before, it may be unoriginal but it does bring about a whole lot of hilarity with it. However unoriginal it may seem, that really is of little consequence. In this game you play the character of war, who is one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. He may not be the most engaging character that you will ever meet but that isn't really a very big deal in this game seeing as its main concern is brutality and some flashy combat rather than good story telling. You get to ride a steed that looks otherworldly as you fight a ferocious and ravenous worm. You also go around beating the crap out of demons with your colourful collection of blades.

Oh yes, you know when you are for some campy good times when you spot otherworldly horses and ravenous worms on the screen. But in addition to the demon carving and the like, you also get to enjoy some very tricky but ultimately satisfying puzzles of the environmental kind. This is a great game for those people who just really are in the mood for some straight out combat and melodramatic fights. It is very fast paced and a very colourful romp as well. While the end of the world may be a very depressing thing to think about, this games makes it rather enjoyable. That may sound freaky but when you think about it, there have been plenty of games that play at the end of the world.But while this story does make for a rocking good time, the story doesn't take very long to descend into absurd territories.

The tale may seem too simple at times but it is also sincere so it does seem like you are indeed playing a hodgepodge of games. You will like this game if you take this game for what it is. It is nothing too serious. It does not have a very concrete story line but that is not its main concern at all. It aims to give you funny looking characters and some really violent battles that will leave your heart pumping. Never mind if the story sort of sucks, but when you play games like these, you cannot really expect too much from the story line.

So if you buy this game, do not expect too much from the story; and yet, just sit back and just enjoy the game play. There is nothing more fun than slashing some works and some strange looking demons to death right? You can really get your blood pumping with this game.

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Posted:
2014-03-22

monty

Super Gamer Dude

6.0

As a genre, it has always seemed like stealth came and went as it pleased, much as the characters within these games often do to elude detection. Right now, we seem to be in a rather good phase for the stealth game in general. Between the introduction of new mechanics in independent games like Mark of the Ninja, the creation of exciting new franchises like Dishonored, or the return of storied franchises of yore like Metal Gear Solid or Splinter Cell, there is a lot for Stealth gamers to love. Sadly, the latest version of one of the older stealth franchises there is, Thief, is not one of these games.

The Thief games have been going for almost a full decade, and in the early days of preview coverage, it looked like Thief was going to be able to implement new mechanics from games such as Dishonored while still maintaining the feeling of a Thief game. Sadly, it seems like the constant rumors of serious development problems were well-founded, and there are countless issues that plague what is a game that maintains an interesting concept at its core.

Drawing a comparison between this game and the still somewhat recent Dishonored is almost a bit eerie. Both games involve rather similar plots involving a plague and some sort of dark voodoo magic behind everything, and Thief borrows quite a few ideas from Dishonored, including the existence of several small hub worlds within which are story missions as well as a selection of different side missions that the main character Garrett can choose to undertake or not.

The problem with Thief trying to use these mechanics is that it uses the same high roofs and narrow walkways without considering the fact that it is lacking the one thing that made traversing Dishonored’s world fun, the magical powers. Sure, at the core of Thief’s story lies some magical conspiracy that even after finishing the game remains a bit murky to me, but none of that really manifests itself within the gameplay, leaving you to clumsily search for ways to get up on roofs using context sensitive button presses.

Those button prompts are just the beginning of how Thief seems to constrain you, though. Whereas the older Thief games, particularly the first one, created a sort of open world even within the enclosed spaces of homes and sewer tunnels, every time the player enters a mission in this new Thief, they make a transition from a semi-open hub world to a painfully linear set of hallways and rooms. There is some freedom to how you deal with enemies, but the easy way out is always just to sneak up behind them and knock them out, which isn’t hard thanks to the awful enemy AI.

Even stealing things in this new Thief feels wrong. Every time you would steal something in the older Thief games, it felt like a big score, like you were really achieving something. Here, Garrett is stealing literally everything that he can get his hands on from single gold coins to handheld mirrors. Instead of feeling like a master thief, Garrett instead feels like an insane kleptomaniac roaming through the city looking to steal garbage.

Even though the franchise is older than that of Dishonored, everything about this new Thief game feels like it was cribbed from Dishonored and then immediately made worse. Thief feels like what a cheaply produced knock-off version of Dishonored might feel like, and that is its biggest problem. If you like any number of the ideas that Thief puts forward, try out Dishonored.

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Posted:
2014-03-22

monty

Super Gamer Dude

6.0

As a genre, it has always seemed like stealth came and went as it pleased, much as the characters within these games often do to elude detection. Right now, we seem to be in a rather good phase for the stealth game in general. Between the introduction of new mechanics in independent games like Mark of the Ninja, the creation of exciting new franchises like Dishonored, or the return of storied franchises of yore like Metal Gear Solid or Splinter Cell, there is a lot for Stealth gamers to love. Sadly, the latest version of one of the older stealth franchises there is, Thief, is not one of these games.

The Thief games have been going for almost a full decade, and in the early days of preview coverage, it looked like Thief was going to be able to implement new mechanics from games such as Dishonored while still maintaining the feeling of a Thief game. Sadly, it seems like the constant rumors of serious development problems were well-founded, and there are countless issues that plague what is a game that maintains an interesting concept at its core.

Drawing a comparison between this game and the still somewhat recent Dishonored is almost a bit eerie. Both games involve rather similar plots involving a plague and some sort of dark voodoo magic behind everything, and Thief borrows quite a few ideas from Dishonored, including the existence of several small hub worlds within which are story missions as well as a selection of different side missions that the main character Garrett can choose to undertake or not.

The problem with Thief trying to use these mechanics is that it uses the same high roofs and narrow walkways without considering the fact that it is lacking the one thing that made traversing Dishonored’s world fun, the magical powers. Sure, at the core of Thief’s story lies some magical conspiracy that even after finishing the game remains a bit murky to me, but none of that really manifests itself within the gameplay, leaving you to clumsily search for ways to get up on roofs using context sensitive button presses.

Those button prompts are just the beginning of how Thief seems to constrain you, though. Whereas the older Thief games, particularly the first one, created a sort of open world even within the enclosed spaces of homes and sewer tunnels, every time the player enters a mission in this new Thief, they make a transition from a semi-open hub world to a painfully linear set of hallways and rooms. There is some freedom to how you deal with enemies, but the easy way out is always just to sneak up behind them and knock them out, which isn’t hard thanks to the awful enemy AI.

Even stealing things in this new Thief feels wrong. Every time you would steal something in the older Thief games, it felt like a big score, like you were really achieving something. Here, Garrett is stealing literally everything that he can get his hands on from single gold coins to handheld mirrors. Instead of feeling like a master thief, Garrett instead feels like an insane kleptomaniac roaming through the city looking to steal garbage.

Even though the franchise is older than that of Dishonored, everything about this new Thief game feels like it was cribbed from Dishonored and then immediately made worse. Thief feels like what a cheaply produced knock-off version of Dishonored might feel like, and that is its biggest problem. If you like any number of the ideas that Thief puts forward, try out Dishonored.

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Posted:
2014-03-25

monty

Super Gamer Dude

6.5

Many 3D platformers have been produced for the handheld consoles but there has been a definite lack of these, especially for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, or at least good ones. In the past, the PlayStation systems have had banner franchises like Jak and Daxter or Ratchet and Clank, but those franchises have fallen by the wayside, meaning that anyone who does not own a Nintendo system is often hard pressed to find a 3D platformer to play.

Microsoft in particular has tried to fill this gap in their lineup multiple times, failing more spectacularly every single time. Back in the PS2/Xbox era there was one platformer that came out both places and was actually pretty decent, Pac-Man World. These games were okay, but never really stood out that much.

Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures carries this torch under a different name. Everything about Ghostly Adventures has the makings of a perfectly serviceable 3D platformer, but when you start trying to piece all of the parts together they never quite click together in the way that you would expect them to.

For starters, the developers of Ghostly Adventures decided that they needed to create a story to try and explain why Pac-Man is in a 3D platformer. As might be expected, the story it absolutely terrible, it takes place on a planet named Pac-World and the main villain is named Betrayus. Pac-Man is voiced to sound like a 10 year old child and everyone else surrounding him sounds like they are at about the same age. The voice acting is awful, the story is awful, the character design is awful, everything about the game's aesthetics is just about as bad as it can get.

Even the environments that the levels take place in are about as generic as you could possibly get. Every different type of level feels like it was pulled directly from a 3D platformer checklist. There is a city world, an ice world and a jungle world among others, each with almost the exact same platforming gameplay design in a different set of window dressing.

Sure, aesthetics might make up the vast majority of what makes a 3D platformer stand out from the other ones on the market, but sometimes gameplay can help one of these titles distinguish itself as well. Sadly, Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is not one of those titles. The game is extremely generic in the way it plays, but it does not bear much resemblance to modern 3D platformers.

Instead, Ghostly Adventures seems to deliberately choose to imitate 3D platformers of yore - perhaps the ones that originated the genre. The camera is clunky and unwieldy in a way that I have not seen since the original Spyro games, and the platforming itself does not fare much better.

Sure, Pac-Man Ghostly Adventures is a completely passable game in just about every single way, but that does not excuse it from criticism. Pac-Man was once a franchise that was always making excellent titles, and it seemed like games such as Pac-Man CE DX were going to be a return to those times.

Ghostly Adventures shows that Namco still expects to be able to wring money from a franchise that is losing more and more cache over the years by simply making a bad version of a modern Sonic platformer and slapping Pac-Man in it. This game does nothing to improve the 3D platformer on non-Nintendo platforms, and I honestly can't see a future in which any Pac-Man game does that. If you have kids that are really into Pac-Man, this isn't terrible, but everyone else should stay away.

avatar name

Posted:
2014-03-26

monty

Super Gamer Dude

6.5

Many 3D platformers have been produced for the handheld consoles but there has been a definite lack of these, especially for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, or at least good ones. In the past, the PlayStation systems have had banner franchises like Jak and Daxter or Ratchet and Clank, but those franchises have fallen by the wayside, meaning that anyone who does not own a Nintendo system is often hard pressed to find a 3D platformer to play.

Microsoft in particular has tried to fill this gap in their lineup multiple times, failing more spectacularly every single time. Back in the PS2/Xbox era there was one platformer that came out both places and was actually pretty decent, Pac-Man World. These games were okay, but never really stood out that much.

Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures carries this torch under a different name. Everything about Ghostly Adventures has the makings of a perfectly serviceable 3D platformer, but when you start trying to piece all of the parts together they never quite click together in the way that you would expect them to.

For starters, the developers of Ghostly Adventures decided that they needed to create a story to try and explain why Pac-Man is in a 3D platformer. As might be expected, the story it absolutely terrible, it takes place on a planet named Pac-World and the main villain is named Betrayus. Pac-Man is voiced to sound like a 10 year old child and everyone else surrounding him sounds like they are at about the same age. The voice acting is awful, the story is awful, the character design is awful, everything about the game's aesthetics is just about as bad as it can get.

Even the environments that the levels take place in are about as generic as you could possibly get. Every different type of level feels like it was pulled directly from a 3D platformer checklist. There is a city world, an ice world and a jungle world among others, each with almost the exact same platforming gameplay design in a different set of window dressing.

Sure, aesthetics might make up the vast majority of what makes a 3D platformer stand out from the other ones on the market, but sometimes gameplay can help one of these titles distinguish itself as well. Sadly, Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is not one of those titles. The game is extremely generic in the way it plays, but it does not bear much resemblance to modern 3D platformers.

Instead, Ghostly Adventures seems to deliberately choose to imitate 3D platformers of yore - perhaps the ones that originated the genre. The camera is clunky and unwieldy in a way that I have not seen since the original Spyro games, and the platforming itself does not fare much better.

Sure, Pac-Man Ghostly Adventures is a completely passable game in just about every single way, but that does not excuse it from criticism. Pac-Man was once a franchise that was always making excellent titles, and it seemed like games such as Pac-Man CE DX were going to be a return to those times.

Ghostly Adventures shows that Namco still expects to be able to wring money from a franchise that is losing more and more cache over the years by simply making a bad version of a modern Sonic platformer and slapping Pac-Man in it. This game does nothing to improve the 3D platformer on non-Nintendo platforms, and I honestly can't see a future in which any Pac-Man game does that. If you have kids that are really into Pac-Man, this isn't terrible, but everyone else should stay away.


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