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Posted:
2014-03-27

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

PS Vita

8.0

Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale is, in a word, solid. It boasts perfectly adequate gameplay, an average learning curve, a selection of suitably balanced combatants, and a variety of content sizable enough to keep most gamers satisfied for the duration of their playtime. Yet, despite being a perfectly fine, playable fighting game, it feels a little...sparse. As though there's something inherently lacking - some barrier holding the title back from joining the pantheon of great gaming experiences.

One factor working against the title is that of comparison. By no means is Battle Royale an original concept in the slightest. The fact is, Nintendo beat Sony to the punch years ago when they released Super Smash Bros. on the Nintendo 64. Two sequels later, and Nintendo has carved out a sizable legacy in the fighting genre, boasting a chaotic, yet functional series chock-full of memorable first-party characters and stages. Naturally, it's not hard to see where Sony drew the influence from, and while Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale is by no means a bad game, it lacks the 'spirit' of Nintendo's comparable franchise.

Of course, despite the inevitable comparison, it's unfair to judge one game based on the merits of another. Still, Battle Royale, despite all its functionality, comes across as a bit disjointed at times. In sheer aesthetic terms, the game runs very well and is certainly pretty to look at, but never reaches truly notable technical heights. While playability trumps visual appeal in the fighting genre, there are still moments when the game seems to lack atmosphere or any original style, and those moments can hamper the player's overall enjoyment of the title and detract from replayability.

The available character roster is of a decent scope, featuring a respectable selection of around 20 characters, with a diverse range of play-styles that keeps the battlefield ripe with tactical possibilities. Speaking of the battlefield, the game opts for a unique approach to combat heavily reliant on building up enough power to unleash deadly 'super' attacks. These attacks are built up through normal hits, and the subsequent super attacks the player unlocks can often heavily tip the tide of battle. While imbued with a general sense of chaos akin to that of the Smash Bros. franchise, there's an underlying tactical theme to combat that takes a good bit of time to acclimate to accordingly. You might found yourself initially turned off by the way combat is handled, as I was, but stick with it and the system opens up.

Despite commenting on the game's lack of truly distinguishing features, by no means am I dismissing the title outright. It's not forgettable, but it's not exceedingly memorable. It's a well-made game, but it doesn't possess the typical flair expected of an exclusive, first-party title. It accomplishes what it sets out to do just fine, and does it respectably enough without being terribly innovative. It's a fun title, if not a truly great one, that should easily appease both PlayStation fans and fans of fighting games.

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Posted:
2014-03-17

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

PC Games

6.5

Just when you thought you'd had enough of taking care of pets and family members, virtual developer Maxis came along and introduced life like characters and situations to the virtual world via animated video game The Sims. For those who have never come across the series, The Sims is an interactive game where players build characters with unique personalities, clothes and so on, and introduce them into a wide assortment of real life scenarios. As a whole, The Sims has sold over 150 million copies internationally, making it the best selling PC game franchise in the world. The Sims Island Paradise 3 for PC is proof that Maxis has not run out of innovative ideas.

What's New to See in Island Paradise 3?

For starters, the landscape has changed. Players can now take their made up characters on crazy water adventures. These characters can go to sea in speedboats, paddle boats, even houseboats. Both the transportation and the sea ports are fully customizable to suit the player's liking.

The Island resorts are custom built, players have the freedom to build their very own island resort hotels equipped with fancy restaurants and swimming pools. The characters can own and run these exotic hotels in the spirit of interactive entrepreneurship.

The activities are new. These island Sims really love the water. They can frolic in the ocean and go on snorkeling adventures. They get the chance to meet up with underwater creatures like mermaids. They might take a dive and discover buried treasures in sunken ships on the ocean floor. At the end of an adventurous day they take the opportunity of relaxing back at the hotel next to the pool with a cool island beverage.

The rewards are new. Sims can adapt new physical water based traits to help them glide through this island world with ease. They might develop strong stomachs and lungs equipped to handle the ocean waves. Some of these traits will lead them on new career paths such as sailors and lifeguards. A truly seaworthy Sim even has the option of becoming a mermaid. Mermaid Sims are free to explore this beautiful water wonderland without snorkels or swim lessons.

The clothing is new. Sims hit the islands in stylish sea lover's attire. Virtual beach clothing, scuba gear and hairstyles are all on offer. Characters can don beach-inspired dread locks and large brimmed straw hats. Three dimensional scuba gear and equipment includes life vests and lifeguard uniforms.

Is it Worth a Play?

Absolutely if you are a Sims fan. The new features make Island Paradise 3 an exceptional addition to The Sims series. Building yachts and speedboats is not only entertaining, it's also a new and exciting experience. Besides, who wouldn't want to take a stab at owning a five star hotel, diving for buried treasure, and becoming a virtual mermaid? Maxis launched its island expansion pack just in time for summer, but the game itself is worth a play all year long. The best thing about this game is that although it is reality based, it adds a not too subtle touch of fantasy to the screen. The only drawback is the limited diving space, which the Sims make up for with the long list of other available activities. For Sims lovers this is a must have to add to your list, but as standalone probably not a good idea.

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Posted:
2014-03-29

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

Wii U

6.4

Rovio has taken its pervasive game of Angry Birds and re-programmed it for this platform. It has the same birds, the same pigs and the same "do it over again and again until it works" style of game play. Rovio packaged Angry Birds (the original), Angry Birds Seasons and Angry Birds Rio together so we can play the game for an entire month without leaving the house.

All computer games come from the same set of instructions; create a number of different classes of characters, give them different abilities, set some as good guys and some as bad guys and tweak the settings to make it slightly easier to be a good guy than a bad guy. Games are more satisfying than real life because you know the rules and the other players. If there's a surprise that defeats you the first time, it's there on purpose; and, once you know about it, you can deal with it. Life doesn't give us second chances, and there's no instructions or FAQ's.

Angry Birds Trilogy brings us lazy pigs who have taken the eggs of some industrious and happily self-destructive birds who fling themselves at the pigs and the structures they inhabit with reckless abandon. The birds come in different flavors; red birds simply go from here to there and hit something, blue birds split into three smaller birds, yellow birds have an afterburner which gives them greater speed and destructive ability, black birds explode and white birds drop bombs. The pigs hide behind wood planks, stones and big ice cubes. There are limitations. Red birds have very little force behind them. Yellow birds burst through wood, but ice and stone stop them dead. Blue birds bring explosive death to ice but stone shrugs them off. The game decides what type and how many birds you get and what order they come in. Tailor the aim point to the type of bird and launch. Each level has a strategy, an aim point that will cause more destruction than it should. You can find walk-throughs for each level online. At the end of each level, the game gives you a score based on how efficiently you destroyed pigs and structures.

The instructions for each new type of bird show the insidious omni-presence of the game. There are no words to run afoul of language differences. The new bird is shown doing its particular trick on the screen over and over until you learn it.

As the game progresses, Rovio adds small complications. They string ropes across certain areas that trigger some of the birds prematurely or add small vehicles that have to be pushed from one place to another. It works, making each additional level different from the last.

It is thoroughly addictive and the game looks better on a big screen than on your smart phone. That brings us to the sticking point. It's almost the same game. On your phone, it's free or $2.50 at most. On the PS3, it's $40. It's played on a bigger screen with a game controller rather than a touch screen and Rovio added 19 new levels to the more than 700 original levels, but that doesn't really change anything. It's still the same game.

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-25

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

PlayStation 3

8.5

The Naruto Series and overall franchise has managed to become an international hit! From selling iconic headbands to seeing hundreds of people cos-play (costume play) over the course of the past several years has indeed caused Naruto to make a mark on the world today. Not just for anime fans, but gamers, cartoonists, and other artists alike.

Naruto is a Ninja based anime, and has translated very well into fighting and action based video games. The video game series, Ninja Storm, is now a multi-platform video game. Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 for the Xbox 360 is one of the latest installments of this particular series.

Naruto Shippuden is the continuation of the original Naruto series which follows the protagonist, Naruto, as he deals with the task of controlling his Jinchuuriki power as the host of the Nine Tails monster. He is a part of the Hidden Leaf Village of Konoha, as a shinobi (Japanese for Ninja) and is determined to become Hokage (the leader of the Village).

Evil doers called the Akatsuki, led by the infamous and powerful Madara, are on the quest of collecting the powers of the Jinchuuriki (there are 9 hosts total, who each hold the power of Tailed beasts). With these powers collected, the plan for the Akatsuki is to destroy the current establishment of the world and dominate it. Basically a world take over.

The fight sequences in this Video game are explosive and very fun to play. It's more about timing and understanding the movements of the player's character and their opponent. Like any fighting game, the goal is to beat the other person out by bringing their health points to zero as many times as necessary to win. There is also a story mode, which is done in a very RPG style fashion. This gives way to the ability to unlock characters, modes, as well as level up certain character points and generate more abilities.

The graphics stay true to the anime series. With a unique blend of three dimensional animation with two dimensional rendering, it looks as though the characters of the video game have truly come to a life of their own. The environments are interactive, allowing for a great gameplay experience in which one must both be wary of their opponent or opponents, as well as the immediate surroundings.

The character selection is the largest in the series so far. With 80 characters to play, there will be a lot of moves to master and techniques and strategies to test out in the heat of battle.

The story mode will allow player decisions to cause in effect, alternate endings to happen. This gives the game a lot of re-playability and will keep gamers interested for a fairly long time.

The other great part of this series, is that because it's a fighting game, one can play against their friends in PvP combat. This creates unlimited possibilities for game time and experiences.

Definitely watch out for this great game!

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-26

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

Xbox 360

8.5

The Naruto Series and overall franchise has managed to become an international hit! From selling iconic headbands to seeing hundreds of people cos-play (costume play) over the course of the past several years has indeed caused Naruto to make a mark on the world today. Not just for anime fans, but gamers, cartoonists, and other artists alike.

Naruto is a Ninja based anime, and has translated very well into fighting and action based video games. The video game series, Ninja Storm, is now a multi-platform video game. Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 for the Xbox 360 is one of the latest installments of this particular series.

Naruto Shippuden is the continuation of the original Naruto series which follows the protagonist, Naruto, as he deals with the task of controlling his Jinchuuriki power as the host of the Nine Tails monster. He is a part of the Hidden Leaf Village of Konoha, as a shinobi (Japanese for Ninja) and is determined to become Hokage (the leader of the Village).

Evil doers called the Akatsuki, led by the infamous and powerful Madara, are on the quest of collecting the powers of the Jinchuuriki (there are 9 hosts total, who each hold the power of Tailed beasts). With these powers collected, the plan for the Akatsuki is to destroy the current establishment of the world and dominate it. Basically a world take over.

The fight sequences in this Video game are explosive and very fun to play. It's more about timing and understanding the movements of the player's character and their opponent. Like any fighting game, the goal is to beat the other person out by bringing their health points to zero as many times as necessary to win. There is also a story mode, which is done in a very RPG style fashion. This gives way to the ability to unlock characters, modes, as well as level up certain character points and generate more abilities.

The graphics stay true to the anime series. With a unique blend of three dimensional animation with two dimensional rendering, it looks as though the characters of the video game have truly come to a life of their own. The environments are interactive, allowing for a great gameplay experience in which one must both be wary of their opponent or opponents, as well as the immediate surroundings.

The character selection is the largest in the series so far. With 80 characters to play, there will be a lot of moves to master and techniques and strategies to test out in the heat of battle.

The story mode will allow player decisions to cause in effect, alternate endings to happen. This gives the game a lot of re-playability and will keep gamers interested for a fairly long time.

The other great part of this series, is that because it's a fighting game, one can play against their friends in PvP combat. This creates unlimited possibilities for game time and experiences.

Definitely watch out for this great game!

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-25

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

PlayStation 3

6.5

Rovio has taken its pervasive game of Angry Birds and re-programmed it for the PS3. It has the same birds, the same pigs and the same "do it over again and again until it works" style of game play. Rovio packaged Angry Birds (the original), Angry Birds Seasons and Angry Birds Rio together so we can play the game for an entire month without leaving the house.

All computer games come from the same set of instructions; create a number of different classes of characters, give them different abilities, set some as good guys and some as bad guys and tweak the settings to make it slightly easier to be a good guy than a bad guy. Games are more satisfying than real life because you know the rules and the other players. If there's a surprise that defeats you the first time, it's there on purpose; and, once you know about it, you can deal with it. Life doesn't give us second chances, and there's no instructions or FAQ's.

Angry Birds Trilogy brings us lazy pigs who have taken the eggs of some industrious and happily self-destructive birds who fling themselves at the pigs and the structures they inhabit with reckless abandon. The birds come in different flavors; red birds simply go from here to there and hit something, blue birds split into three smaller birds, yellow birds have an afterburner which gives them greater speed and destructive ability, black birds explode and white birds drop bombs. The pigs hide behind wood planks, stones and big ice cubes. There are limitations. Red birds have very little force behind them. Yellow birds burst through wood, but ice and stone stop them dead. Blue birds bring explosive death to ice but stone shrugs them off. The game decides what type and how many birds you get and what order they come in. Tailor the aim point to the type of bird and launch. Each level has a strategy, an aim point that will cause more destruction than it should. You can find walk-throughs for each level online. At the end of each level, the game gives you a score based on how efficiently you destroyed pigs and structures.

The instructions for each new type of bird show the insidious omni-presence of the game. There are no words to run afoul of language differences. The new bird is shown doing its particular trick on the screen over and over until you learn it.

As the game progresses, Rovio adds small complications. They string ropes across certain areas that trigger some of the birds prematurely or add small vehicles that have to be pushed from one place to another. It works, making each additional level different from the last.

It is thoroughly addictive and the game looks better on a big screen than on your smart phone. That brings us to the sticking point. It's almost the same game. On your phone, it's free or $2.50 at most. On the PS3, it's $40. It's played on a bigger screen with a game controller rather than a touch screen and Rovio added 19 new levels to the more than 700 original levels, but that doesn't really change anything. It's still the same game.

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-25

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

Nintendo Wii

7.9

The game is set on Nu Earth, which has been divided by war into the North and the South. You are a Genetic Infantryman from the SouthersÂ’ side, an advanced trooper that will win the war for them. A general, however, betrays you, resulting in you being the only Genetic Infantryman to survive an ambush. As the only super-soldier left alive, it is up to you to get revenge.

One of the cool features of the game is that you will end up picking up bio-chips that can be mounted in your equipment, allowing you to converse with some of your buddies that died in the ambush. TheyÂ’ll help you out, too, by automating parts of your equipment for you. So, if you need to set up a turret, the bio-chip personality in your gun will convert the weapon into a turret for you, if you need ammo, the bio-chip personality in your backpack will create some from the scrap youÂ’ve picked up. This different style of gameplay allows your character to gain some excellent powers, but without you feeling like your character is unstoppable, and also in a way that upgrades as you go through the game.

These different upgrades provide a lot of the capabilities that will have you playing through this game a second, and even a third time. ThatÂ’s because, even though you play through one way, if you stop and think about it, most of the sections that you have to get through can also be tackled in a couple of other ways with your equipment and upgrades. Once you realize this, youÂ’ll discover just how much fun it can be to overcome an area through creative tactics.

Fighting the AI in this game is fun, too. ItÂ’s not brilliant, in that it canÂ’t pull off unaimed head shots with every pull of the finger, but your enemies will take cover and work as a group to try and flank you, and do other things to remove you from cover. Overcoming their tactics while using your own makes for some mental and physical flailing that, if you survive it, is very rewarding. There is also a bunch of troop types, so killing the enemy never gets boring.

When Rogue Trooper hit shelves, it was not expected to be nearly the shooter that it is. What gamers have ended up with is a solid title that uses the Wii Remote to enhance the title while not ruining it in the port. ItÂ’s definitely one any Wii owner will want in their collection.

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-31

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

PC Games

7.9

The game is set on Nu Earth, which has been divided by war into the North and the South. You are a Genetic Infantryman from the SouthersÂ’ side, an advanced trooper that will win the war for them. A general, however, betrays you, resulting in you being the only Genetic Infantryman to survive an ambush. As the only super-soldier left alive, it is up to you to get revenge.

One of the cool features of the game is that you will end up picking up bio-chips that can be mounted in your equipment, allowing you to converse with some of your buddies that died in the ambush. TheyÂ’ll help you out, too, by automating parts of your equipment for you. So, if you need to set up a turret, the bio-chip personality in your gun will convert the weapon into a turret for you, if you need ammo, the bio-chip personality in your backpack will create some from the scrap youÂ’ve picked up. This different style of gameplay allows your character to gain some excellent powers, but without you feeling like your character is unstoppable, and also in a way that upgrades as you go through the game.

These different upgrades provide a lot of the capabilities that will have you playing through this game a second, and even a third time. ThatÂ’s because, even though you play through one way, if you stop and think about it, most of the sections that you have to get through can also be tackled in a couple of other ways with your equipment and upgrades. Once you realize this, youÂ’ll discover just how much fun it can be to overcome an area through creative tactics.

Fighting the AI in this game is fun, too. ItÂ’s not brilliant, in that it canÂ’t pull off unaimed head shots with every pull of the finger, but your enemies will take cover and work as a group to try and flank you, and do other things to remove you from cover. Overcoming their tactics while using your own makes for some mental and physical flailing that, if you survive it, is very rewarding. There is also a bunch of troop types, so killing the enemy never gets boring.

When Rogue Trooper hit shelves, it was not expected to be nearly the shooter that it is. What gamers have ended up with is a solid title that uses the Wii Remote to enhance the title while not ruining it in the port. ItÂ’s definitely one any Wii owner will want in their collection.

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-25

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

Nintendo Wii

8.0

Much like the movie, the story revolves around the friendships Wall-E makes, and the place that he is at. HeÂ’s dropped off on a dirty planet, all by himself, and has to clean it up. The first levels that are in the game reflect that loneliness, since you wonÂ’t see another creature on the planet for quite a bit. After a little while though, Wall-E runs into Eve, a flying robot that will take him on his further adventure.

The character of Wall-E and Eve are done very well. The cutscenes, especially, provide lots of opportunities for you to see the humanity in these robots. These scenes were not taken from the movie, which is a nice change from games that are so reliant on their big-screen hosts that they actually pull images from the movie to help tell the story.

The gameplay in this title is somewhat interesting, despite becoming less so the farther in you go. In the early levels, Wall-E can jump and make little trash cubes which he flings at enemies. Despite there being a bunch of different types of garbage he can make into attack cubes, there isn't a lot of difficult puzzle-solving to be found. The keys to locked doors are generally located right next to the door, making it much easier on younger generations, but causing older players to wonder just what the purpose of that locked door was.

There are also portions where you get to play as Eve. These are extremely fun, since the controls are very responsive. She can fly around at will, either in great big open-air spaces, or racing through tunnels. The capability to fly around the environments is a boon to the game because it is so well done, but there were certainly opportunities to do even more with it.

The last portion of the game has you flying a spaceship and shooting hordes of robots that are in your way. After spending so much of the game engaged in platforming skills, the changeover to direct shooting is something of a shock. It actually decreases the fun from the game, despite the fact that it changes the gameplay some, because the game is so based on friendship and enjoyable things that shooting enormous numbers of robots into oblivion doesn't actually feel right here.

Despite the small issues with Wall-E, the ten hours that it takes to play through the game are actually pretty enjoyable. If youÂ’re a younger fan of the movie, then this game might have exactly what youÂ’re looking for.

avatar name

Posted:
2013-05-31

fatman

Super Gamer Dude

PC Games

8.0

Much like the movie, the story revolves around the friendships Wall-E makes, and the place that he is at. HeÂ’s dropped off on a dirty planet, all by himself, and has to clean it up. The first levels that are in the game reflect that loneliness, since you wonÂ’t see another creature on the planet for quite a bit. After a little while though, Wall-E runs into Eve, a flying robot that will take him on his further adventure.

The character of Wall-E and Eve are done very well. The cutscenes, especially, provide lots of opportunities for you to see the humanity in these robots. These scenes were not taken from the movie, which is a nice change from games that are so reliant on their big-screen hosts that they actually pull images from the movie to help tell the story.

The gameplay in this title is somewhat interesting, despite becoming less so the farther in you go. In the early levels, Wall-E can jump and make little trash cubes which he flings at enemies. Despite there being a bunch of different types of garbage he can make into attack cubes, there isn't a lot of difficult puzzle-solving to be found. The keys to locked doors are generally located right next to the door, making it much easier on younger generations, but causing older players to wonder just what the purpose of that locked door was.

There are also portions where you get to play as Eve. These are extremely fun, since the controls are very responsive. She can fly around at will, either in great big open-air spaces, or racing through tunnels. The capability to fly around the environments is a boon to the game because it is so well done, but there were certainly opportunities to do even more with it.

The last portion of the game has you flying a spaceship and shooting hordes of robots that are in your way. After spending so much of the game engaged in platforming skills, the changeover to direct shooting is something of a shock. It actually decreases the fun from the game, despite the fact that it changes the gameplay some, because the game is so based on friendship and enjoyable things that shooting enormous numbers of robots into oblivion doesn't actually feel right here.

Despite the small issues with Wall-E, the ten hours that it takes to play through the game are actually pretty enjoyable. If youÂ’re a younger fan of the movie, then this game might have exactly what youÂ’re looking for.


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